University City District Blog

Jan 17, 2018 2 days ago

Mariposa: The Little Co-op that Could

A recent frigid morning didn’t stop shoppers from making their way into Mariposa Co-op. The cooperative grocery store fills the building at 4824 Baltimore Avenue to bursting with farm-fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables, bulk grains, nuts and pasta, high-quality meats and cheeses, and much more. The customers browsing the aisles are as diverse as the offerings: a young white woman with green hair wearing a faux fur coat; a middle-aged black man still wearing his winter cap and thick coat; a dark-skinned 20 something with a pierced septum. 

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Dec 22, 2017 29 days ago

The Porch at 30th Street Station in January, 2018

Through January, The Porch will feature fewer options for outdoor lunch due to the cold weather. Two trucks will vend each week for lunch, and beginning January 4th, our friends from Schmear It will set up shop in the pop-up in the center of The Porch each morning.

The schedule is below, but keep an eye on our Twitter and Facebook pages for pop-up vending during warmer weather days. 

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Dec 19, 2017 31 days ago

20 Years, 20 Stories: UCD's Mr. Fix-It

You always know when Ryan Spak is in the office for the day. Although he only works at UCD part-time, he makes his hours count. He’s always hustling in through the back door, barking into his cell phone, zipping from meeting to meeting, and wasting no time getting down to business so he can solve one problem and move onto the next. He’s UCD’s Mr. Fix-It, our professor of permits, the deed detective. You need a drywall guy? An electrician? Need to know how to navigate L&I? Call Ryan Spak. But chances are he’s on the other line. 

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Dec 05, 2017 45 days ago

UCD Receives Funding From Lincoln Financial Foundation

We are pleased to share that we recently received a $20,000 grant from the Lincoln Financial Foundation to support the West Philadelphia Skills Initiative, our job training program that connects employers seeking talent with West Philadelphians seeking opportunity. Lincoln Financial Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Lincoln Financial Group, believes in empowering people to live greater lives, which advances culture and empowers greater positive change.

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Nov 30, 2017 50 days ago

Spreading Cheer and Combating Homelessness with a Holiday Pop-Up at The Porch

The Porch at 30th Street Station is about to get a lot more festive thanks to a new "Spread Holiday Cheer" campaign, a collaboration with Project HOME and Schmear It. For three weeks in December, from the 4th through the 22nd, UCD is hosting a special, holiday pop-up in the center of The Porch at 30th Street. The pop-up will enliven UCD's flagship public space while contributing to the fight against homelessness in Philadelphia.

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Nov 29, 2017 52 days ago

20 Years, 20 Stories: UCD Safety Ambassador Shaun Loadholt

All throughout University City, a group of dedicated men and women work 365 days a year to keep our neighborhood safe. There’s Mike, standing at 40th and Market each morning as commuters exit the subway station, or Brianna who takes over for the evening commute. Each day when the final bell rings at the Penn Alexander School, Ryan is there to greet the students. Tuhran hands out materials at college safety fairs to educate students about bike safety and situational awareness.

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Nov 17, 2017 2 months ago

Help Clean Your Neighborhood with a Community Cleanup on Saturday December 2

We are once again partnering with the City of Philadelphia on a neighborhood cleanup on Saturday, December 2nd. We will assist block captains, students, volunteer groups and neighbors by providing trash bags, brooms, work gloves, and trash pickup.

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Nov 14, 2017 2 months ago

20 Years, 20 Stories: A Retrospective with UCD Founders

University City District launched in 1997, as dedicated residents, institutions and businesses came together to help improve their community. As we look back over the past twenty years, we could think of no one more well-suited to reflecting on the neighborhood's transformation than those who were most involved in creating UCD. In this short video, hear from five of the founding members of University City District's Board of Directors on why the organization started, why they became involved, and how they've seen the neighborhood grow and change since UCD's formation.

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Nov 09, 2017 2 months ago

The State of University City 2018

On Thursday, November 9, more than 300 guests attended our annual State of University City event at World Cafe Live. This event served as an opportunity to celebrate UCD's 20th anniversary, while highlighting the major advancements in the neighborhood. Drexel President John Fry and University of Pennsylvania Executive Vice President Craig Carnaroli, the respective founding and current chairs of the UCD Board of Directors, joined UCD President Matt Bergheiser as speakers during the event.

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Nov 01, 2017 2 months ago

20 Years, 20 Stories: The Duo Behind the University City Review

Even if you don’t know Bob and Claudia Christian by name, we guarantee that if you live in University City, you’ve seen their work. Bob and Claudia are the husband and wife one-two punch behind the long-standing University City Review, the hyper-local paper that’s been delivering news to the neighborhood for nearly 30 years. Bob is the paper’s publisher and editor, and Claudia serves as the associate publisher, yet given the small size of their operation, they both handle much more.

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Oct 30, 2017 2 months ago

November at The Porch at 30th Street Station

The weather is getting colder, but you can enjoy lunch from rotating food trucks at The Porch at 30th Street Station! Lunch service will continue Monday through Friday, with breakfast service from Schmear It on Thursday mornings. There will be no vending on Thursday, November 23 or Friday, November 24 due to Thanksgiving. Keep an eye out for pop-up events and schedule changes via our Facebook and Twitter pages.


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Oct 20, 2017 3 months ago

2017 WPSI Impact Report

For the past six years, a unique constellation of enlightened employer partners, committed funders and partners, and dedicated West Philadelphia Skills Initiative staff have joined together to connect hundreds of talented neighborhood residents to work. Along the way, we have helped world-class institutions find the talent they need, supported local jobseekers as they transform their lives, and developed a cutting-edge approach to workforce development.

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Oct 05, 2017 3 months ago

The Philadelphia Orchestra Comes to The Porch on October 23

On Monday, October 23rd we are welcoming members of The Philadelphia Orchestra for a free lunchtime performance at The Porch at 30th Street Station!As part of their city-wide Audience Appreciation Day, a brass ensemble will perform free of charge from noon to 1 pm. Enjoy this wonderful chance to see some of Philadelphia's best musicians at The Porch!

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Oct 03, 2017 3 months ago

20 Years, 20 Stories: The Enterprise Center

As Philadelphians come together to celebrate Minority Enterprise Development (MED) week –  a time when minority businesses are fêted and encouraged through city-wide events –  we couldn’t imagine a better organization to highlight than The Enterprise Center. This West Philadelphia non-profit has been providing access to capital, capacity building, business education and economic development opportunities to high-potential, minority entrepreneurs since 1989. To learn more about the history of The Enterprise Center (TEC) and its role in the community we spoke with the organization’s president, Della Clark, who has led TEC since 1992.

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Oct 02, 2017 3 months ago

Recapping a Great Summer 2017 in University City

After two Baltimore Avenue Dollar Strolls, ten evenings of University City Dining Days, four editions of the 40th Street Summer Series, four movies in Clark Park, dozens of PECO Performances at The Porch, thousands of pairs of sunglasses, hundreds of bottles of bubbles, and only a few rainouts, our 2017 Summer in University City series has come to an end!

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Sep 29, 2017 3 months ago

October at The Porch at 30th Street Station

Although the summer season of performances has ended, October will still be a great time to enjoy The Porch! Take advantage of cooler temperatures while enjoying food trucks during lunch Monday through Friday, breakfast on Thursday mornings, and the Pub at The Porch on select evenings.

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Sep 19, 2017 4 months ago

20 Years, 20 Stories: Joan Myers Brown and PHILADANCO!

The building that houses PHILADANCO, the West Philadelphia dance institution, isn’t terribly hard to find. Need a street sign to guide you? Search for a small block just north of Market Street with the name PHILADANCO Way. Still lost? Look for the brown brick building stamped with PHILADANCO in big white letters.

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Sep 05, 2017 4 months ago

20 Years, 20 Stories: Dock Street Brewery

Selecting just one story to tell about Rosemarie Certo, the charismatic woman behind Dock Street Brewery, wasn’t easy. We could have told the story of an immigrant whose widowed mother left behind everything she knew in Sicily to settle in America. Rosemarie's story could have been about a woman earning widespread acclaim with a hugely successful brand in an industry traditionally dominated by men.

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Aug 28, 2017 4 months ago

September at The Porch at 30th Street Station

We have a very exciting month of September in store at The Porch at 30th Street Station, featuring food, pop-up performances, and the debut of our brand new outdoor bar!

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Aug 23, 2017 4 months ago

Announcing the Pub at The Porch

Since its introduction in late 2011, The Porch at 30th Street Station has become one of Philadelphia’s most vibrant public spaces, with amenities such as flexible seating, seasonal horticulture, rotating food trucks, and eclectic performances. And now, The Porch will soon be a destination for post-work drinks, thanks to a collaboration between University City District, SHIFTSPACE and Bridgewater’s Pub.

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