Philadelphia Region and Tianjin Economic-Technology Development Area Sign Clean Energy Agreement

Philadelphia, July 28, 2014 – A new agreement signed earlier this month will promote urban sustainability in Philadelphia through a partnership between delegates from Greater Philadelphia and the Tianjin Economic-Technological Development Area (TEDA) of Philadelphia’s sister city Tianjin, China.  The partnership will focus on clean energy innovation for cities prioritizing green building efficiency, online monitoring systems for electricity usage and wetlands water sustainability.

“This partnership combines the experience and innovation of our leading companies, entrepreneurs and university-based researchers and applies them to market opportunities developing at scale and speed in China through Tianjin’s massive Binhai project,” said Alan Greenberger, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development.  “Our participating companies and research institutions benefit through project-based access to a broad array of trade, investment and research opportunities.  Simultaneously, Philadelphia and our sister city, Tianjin, are able to advance an economically-meaningful international collaboration which can help both – and ultimately others – become greener cities.”

Signed in the presence of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi in the Great Hall of the People on the final day of the U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue talks in Beijing, the agreement was one of six collaborations awarded U.S.-China EcoPartnership status at the this year’s U.S.-China high-level talks.  The U.S.-China EcoPartnership program is an annual competition run jointly by the U.S. and Chinese governments to elevate successful sub-national cooperation models to international prominence, and by doing so, to spur broad replication by their peers in the U.S. and China.

The three year PHL/TEDA Urban Clean Energy EcoPartnership is the latest outcome of a three-year joint effort by the City of Philadelphia, led by Deputy Mayor Alan Greenberger and the China Partnership of Greater Philadelphia (CPGP), founded by Merritt T. (Terry) Cooke.  Following Deputy Mayor Greenberger’s trip to Tianjin and China in late 2010, Cooke formed CPGP as an open, peer-platform for businesses, local government, universities and other non-profits to collaborate on clean energy and environment opportunities with China under the Ten Year Framework signed by former Secretary of State Clinton in July 2009.  In 2012 and 2013, Mayor Michael A. Nutter and Tianjin’s Mayor Huang brought back-to-back delegations on first-ever visits to their respective sister cities.  In October 2013, TEDA brought a major trade delegation to Philadelphia to meet with local businesses and to lay the groundwork for this joint PHL/TEDA three-year EcoPartnership collaboration.

“Our PHL EcoPartnership with TEDA gives our region’s businesses, entrepreneurs and researchers direct access to trade and investment opportunities with the Tianjin-Binhai New Area,” said Terry Cooke. “This low-carbon mega-city – replicating the scale of Pudong’s  and Shenzhen’s earlier development – is fast emerging as the world’s number one urban, clean-energy showcase. Through our EcoPartnership’s open collaboration platform and our innovative Sustainability Alliance Program with Ben Franklin Technology Partners and White & Williams, we’re tapping our region directly into this national-level growth engine in China. And, as one of just 24 bi-nationally awarded EcoPartners since 2009, we’re doing so as a recognized sub-national leader in U.S.-China environmental sustainability.”

The U.S. side of Greater Philadelphia’s EcoPartnership with TEDA is organized as a public/private partnership between the City of Philadelphia’s Commerce Department and the China Partnership of Greater Philadelphia, a 501c3 non-profit organization formed in 2011 to assist the 11 counties of Greater Philadelphia access trade and investment opportunities associated with the Ten Framework for U.S.-China Cooperation in Energy & Environment (2008-18).

The PHL/TEDA Urban Clean Energy EcoPartnership was selected from a competitive application process and was one of six signed last week in Beijing.   Launched in 2008 and headed by the U.S. Department of State in the U.S. and by the National Development and Reform Commission in China, the EcoPartnership program promotes cooperation between local governments and organizations in the U.S. and China in climate and energy issues.

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Press Release

Mayor Nutter Leads Business Development Trip To France To Expand International Commerce And Investment In Philadelphia

Philadelphia, July 24, 2014 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter arrived in Paris, France early this morning for a six-day business development trip with a delegation of Philadelphia business leaders focused on promoting cycling, commerce and investment in the City of Philadelphia.  The majority of Mayor Nutter’s time while in France will be spent raising the City’s profile through a series of meetings with the Mayor of Paris, professional cycling executives, and chief executives of a range of French businesses, including Saint-Gobain, which has its North American headquarters located in Valley Forge, PA.

Mayor Nutter’s primary focus during the trip will be promoting Philadelphia – as a modern, global city, a world-class destination for tourism, and an excellent location for businesses to consider when planning to expand or relocate – which builds on the goals and successes of comparable trips to London, England; Tel Aviv, Israel; and Tianjin, China.

“As one of our country’s premier cities, Philadelphia also has a growing reputation on the world stage,” said Mayor Nutter.  “We are one of the most visited cities in the country, supported by excellent access to air, rail and highway transportation.  We have experienced huge growth in the number of young, educated people who want to live and work in our city – twice the national average of 25-34 year olds living in Center City and its surrounding neighborhoods – and that is driving more businesses to move to Philadelphia to access that talent.  As Mayor, I welcome foreign investment and interest in our great city and I look forward to strengthening Philadelphia’s ties with cities and businesses in France.”

The other members of the delegation are: Patrick Cunnane, President and CEO of Advanced Sports International (ASI); PA State Representative Madeleine Dean; Karen Bliss, Vice President of Marketing, ASI; Milay Galvez, Sponsorship Manager, ASI; Stephanie Genuardi, Marketing-Communications Manager, ASI; Richard Adler, Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic promoter and local businessman; Alan Morrison, Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic promoter and local businessman, and Lisa J. Nutter, First Lady of Philadelphia and avid cyclist.  ASI is a company located in Philadelphia that markets a full line of premium bicycles, parts and accessories under the Fuji, Kestrel, SE, Breezer, Terry and Oval brands.

During Mayor Nutter’s meeting with the Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, topics of discussion will include climate change, urban sustainability, and other issues facing cities around the world.  Mayor Hidalgo and Mayor Nutter share similar visions for their respective cities including access to early childhood education, increased availability of affordable housing and environmental sustainability.  Mayor Hidalgo travelled to New York City this past May to meet with Mayor Bill de Blasio to discuss many of the same issues.

While in Paris, Mayor Nutter and Lisa Nutter will inspect Vélib’, the public bicycle sharing system in the city and surrounding municipalities.  Vélib’ is operated as a concession by the French advertising corporation JCDecaux, the largest outdoor advertising company in the world.  Vélib’ is the world’s third-largest bikesharing program, encompassing about 14,000 bicycles and more than 1,200 stations.  Mayor Nutter will discuss best practices for hosting and operating public bike share systems in advance of Philadelphia launching its own system in 2015.  Mayor Nutter and Lisa Nutter will also meet with Brian Cookson, President of Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), to discuss the possibility of Philadelphia participating in a Women’s World Cup cycling event in 2015.  UCI is the world governing body for sport cycling and international competitive cycling events.  Lisa Nutter is a Fuji sponsored cyclist and has been leading an effort to increase awareness and enhance the promotion of women’s cycling, both amateur and professional, in Philadelphia.

The tour of Vélib’ and meeting with Mr. Cookson will complement Mayor Nutter’s opportunity to be a spectator at the internationally renowned Tour de France cycling race. Mayor Nutter and Lisa Nutter were invited to view the race because Philadelphia is recognized as a premier sports city in the U.S., especially for cycling as the city hosts one of the largest races in the nation, the Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic, featuring the famous ‘Manayunk Wall’.

Earlier this year, Tour de France race organizers announced that for the first time this year, the Tour will host an elite women’s competition called ‘La Course by Le Tour de France’, which will finish on the Avenue de Champs-Elysees in Paris ahead of the men’s race.  The Parx Casino Philly Cycling Classic is notably one of the few races that offer equal prize purses to the men’s and women’s race winners, which was proposed by Lisa Nutter and other who advise the Mayor on cycling issues.  Mayor Nutter and First Lady Lisa Nutter’s attendance at the Tour de France will heighten Philadelphia’s visibility among international-level athletes, especially women, as a premier venue in which to compete as Philadelphia seeks to enhance the national and international promotion of its’ bike race.

From Paris, Mayor Nutter will travel to Lyon where he will meet with a variety of French companies (and American businesses with business relationships in France) and representatives from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, Center for Direct Investment.

Mayor Nutter will meet with the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Saint-Gobain, Pierre-André de Chalendar, who will lead the Mayor on a tour of the Palace of Versailles along with other representatives from Saint-Gobain.  The famed Hall of Mirrors (La Grande Galerie) in the palace was created with mirrors manufactured in France by Saint-Gobain.  Saint-Gobain is the world’s largest building materials company, recording billions in annual sales and employing about 15,000 people in 265 locations across the U.S. and Canada, including 800 employees in the Greater Philadelphia region and more than 1,300 in Pennsylvania.

“As Saint-Gobain approaches its 350th anniversary, we are looking forward to Philadelphia serving as our flagship city in North America as we commemorate 15 generations of innovation,” said Pierre-André de Chalendar, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Saint-Gobain. “There is no mistaking the architectural influence Paris has had on Philadelphia, and today I am honored to meet Mayor Michael A. Nutter and show him not only Paris’ architectural icons, but our appreciation for the equally remarkable city of Philadelphia and its influence on our company’s history and success.”

For Saint-Gobain’s 350th anniversary, the company is planning a worldwide community outreach and education program to commemorate its history, products and celebrate its spirit of innovation, with special programmatic emphasis on the Greater Philadelphia region where it has been headquartered for 45 years, and its largest subsidiary, CertainTeed, has been headquartered since 1948.  The anniversary will present an opportunity to educate key stakeholders around the world about building design and materials’ impact on all aspects of the built environment.  This past April, Saint-Gobain announced plans for a new, state-of-the-art North American corporate headquarters in Malvern, PA.

Mayor Nutter will seek to reinforce Saint-Gobain’s already-strong ties with Pennsylvania, and extend that connection to the City of Philadelphia and its’ re-emerging manufacturing sector.  Saint-Gobain has already partnered with the City on a number of initiatives: the company is the lead partner on the City’s STEM education coalition which won the US2020 City Competition, a national competition to encourage youth mentorship in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and the company partnered with YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School to renovate the nonprofit’s first home in Philadelphia which achieved U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Platinum certification.  Saint-Gobain and YouthBuild Philadelphia are currently rebuilding two more homes that are also expected to achieve LEED certification.

During the trip, Mayor Nutter will be accompanied by his wife, Mrs. Lisa Nutter.  The City will pay for the cost of Mayor Nutter’s flight as he is travelling in his official capacity, but not for his lodging or meals.  The City is not covering any travel costs for Mrs. Nutter.

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Press Release

Department Of Licenses & Inspections Announces New Signage Regulations For Construction And Demolition Sites

Philadelphia, July 17, 2014 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter and the City of Philadelphia’s Department of Licenses & Inspections (L&I) unveiled new regulations requiring the display of project information signs at all construction and demolition sites.

“In the wake of the tragic events at 22nd & Market Streets on June 5, 2013, the City of Philadelphia has been engaged in an ongoing process to evaluate our regulations, laws and standard procedures – all in an effort to do our best to ensure that another tragedy doesn’t occur,” said Mayor Nutter.  “Two days after the collapse. I announced a series of initiatives to transform L&I procedures.  Today’s announcement is a continuation of that process.  In an effort to improve communication with the public, all project sites will be required to install signage containing important information about the project in a prominent location easily viewed by passersby.  Any citizens will be able to learn what is going on at the site, monitor the project’s progress, and report any dangerous conditions to the City for inspection quickly and easily.”

L&I Commissioner Carlton Williams said, “The goal of this regulation is to ensure the public is informed about ongoing construction and demolition work and provide citizens with tools to report any potential violations. This new requirement is part of the Department’s ongoing commitment to improving safety at all construction and demolition sites.”

The regulation calls for specific signage for major construction and demolition projects involving buildings that are four or more stories in height or 10,000 square feet in lot space. Those sites must display in a prominent location a project information sign measuring at least 3’x5’ and identifying the property address, property owner, contractor, renderings, and work completion date, as well as contact information to report any suspected violations.

Smaller construction and demolition projects involving buildings three stories or less in height will also be required to post a project information sign measuring 11”x17” and containing pertinent details of the project.

The regulation applies to all construction and demolition projects submitted to L&I after June 30, 2014. Specific information about the regulations can be found on L&I’s website, www.phila.gov/li, under the “What’s New” section.

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Press Release

Mayor’s Office Releases Report Of Mayor’s Box Attendees: January 1 Through June 30, 2014

Philadelphia, July 17, 2014–  The City of Philadelphia has released the names of those who received tickets to the Mayor’s Box from January 1, 2014 to June 30, 2014.  The City’s policy for distribution of Mayor’s Box tickets is governed by a written, public policy, which provides for the equitable distribution of complimentary tickets received by the City of Philadelphia.

Some report highlights are as follows:

  • 2,384 tickets were distributed between January 1, 2014 and June 30, 2014.
  • 1,298 (54%) tickets for events in the Mayor’s Box were distributed to children from recreation centers, nonprofits and other groups who attended Wells Fargo Center, Citizens Bank Park and Lincoln Financial Field events.
  • 83% of all tickets that were available for use were distributed.
  • Since the policy’s inception on April 4, 2008, 30,757 tickets have been distributed.  16,466 (54%) tickets have been distributed to schools, nonprofits, recreation centers and other groups.

SEE REPORT

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Press Release

Mayor Nutter Praises UIL Holding Corp For Staying The Course On Sale Of PGW

Philadelphia, July 16, 2014 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter praised the decision by UIL Holdings Corp. to continue its effort to acquire the Philadelphia Gas Works in a $1.86 billion transaction that awaits action by the Philadelphia City Council. The Mayor’s comments were in response to an announcement today from James P. Torgerson, UIL President and CEO, that the company would continue to pursue the purchase of the city-owned gas utility even though the purchase agreement agreed to last March provides that UIL can, as of today, exit the proposed sale at any time while the matter is pending before City Council.

“First, I want to acknowledge the dedication and hard work that a team of City officials and our consultants have done in presenting the data and making a convincing case for a sale of PGW and the many benefits that will flow to Philadelphians,” Mayor Nutter said. “I have spoken with Jim Torgerson and he’s indicated to me his company’s strong desire to continue the sale process.

“This incredibly important issue is squarely in front of City Council and both the Company and our Administration have been providing voluminous amounts of information to City Council and its consultant, Concentric Energy Advisors. We eagerly await Concentric’s report and the opportunity to present our case for selling PGW to City Council and the public.

“We stand fully prepared to provide Council with any further information or analysis it might need as it conducts its vital and historic due diligence on this matter. We look forward to the introduction of the legislation and the announcement of a schedule of Council hearings. Philadelphians have an absolute right to know the basic details of the transaction and how it will impact them as consumers and also how it will affect the dedicated workforce and retirees of PGW, the fiscal impact on City government and its Pension Fund and the city’s economy.”

In a statement released this morning, Mr. Torgerson said in part, “We have decided to continue our efforts to pursue this acquisition and become a new business partner in the City of Philadelphia. UIL remains ready to assist Council in its assessment of the sale, including the essential public dialogue of what we believe is a valuable economic opportunity for the City of Philadelphia. UIL will continue to evaluate the situation and take additional actions as appropriate.”

Mayor Nutter noted that UIL Holdings showed tremendous confidence in Philadelphia when it submitted the highest bid for PGW among 33 original contenders, agreed to no layoffs, a rate freeze and to maintain a PGW headquarters here. Based on a $1.86 billion sale price and after paying off all PGW’s bond obligations and putting aside funds for other potential liabilities, the City will have between $420 million and $630 million to invest in the City Pension Fund, which currently is about 47 funded.

“In the purchase agreement, we required strong protections for low-income consumers and seniors. We made sure there are strong protections for the job security of our valued union workforce and also pension protections,” said Mayor Nutter. “But the transaction also provides for increased safety by enhanced investments in replacing miles of cast-iron pipes and for new business opportunities such as investing in PGW’s LNG facilities, which can help create an ‘energy hub’ that will produce more jobs in the city and region. This proposed transaction allows us to begin to address perhaps the most daunting financial challenge facing our City, namely our underfunded city pension fund.”

PGW is the nation’s largest municipally-owned gas utility, with annual revenues of more than $600 million, more than 500,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers and more than 1,600 employees. Read more about the sale process and submit questions or comments at www.exploringthesale.com.

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Press Release

Mayor Nutter Welcomes New Tech Company ‘Think Brownstone’ To Philadelphia

Latest suburban company to open a Philadelphia ‘gateway’ office

 

Philadelphia, July 10, 2014 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter and Think Brownstone, a Conshohocken-based user experience and design agency, opened the company’s new Philadelphia office at the historic Packard Grande Building in Center City.  Founded in 2007 by Carl White and Brian McIntire, Think Brownstone employs 50 people, including at least 15 who will work in the Philadelphia office, with the potential to expand.   Think Brownstone is the latest in a long line of companies to open a Philadelphia ‘gateway’ office in order to attract the talented workforce that wants to live and work in the city.  Other companies that have recently opened ‘gateway’ offices include Bentley Systems, Fiberlink, SevOne, and Eisner Amper.

 

“Think Brownstone’s decision to open an office in Philadelphia is the latest demonstration that Philadelphia is a great place to start and grow a technology company,” said Mayor Nutter. “Through initiatives like Startup PHL, my Administration, together with our partner PIDC, continues to do all we can to make Philadelphia a more business-friendly place and put this city on the map as one of America’s most diverse, dynamic and exciting places to build a company.”

 

Think Brownstone is a user experience and design agency that works with global clients, such as ING, The Hay Group, and Comcast, to improve their digital products. The company uses extensive research and discovery methods to produce user-centered software, including business applications, websites, and data visualization and analytic tools.

 

“When we originally pictured Think Brownstone, it was going to be in an historic building in the City of Philadelphia,” said Carl White, co-founder and CEO. “Even though we established our first studio in Conshohocken, we are thrilled to see that original vision come to life in our second studio at 15th and Sansom Streets. We are looking forward to being closer to our Philadelphia clients, being more convenient to the extensive pool of talented Philadelphia designers and developers, and taking advantage of all of the business services the city has to offer.”

 

Supporting entrepreneurs and startup companies in Philadelphia and attracting an educated talented workforce is a major priority for the Nutter Administration. Since the launch of Startup PHL the City has awarded more $210,000 across ten Startup PHL Call for Ideas grants. The latest round focused on attracting and retaining talent; recipients include organizations such as Penn Apps Fellows, Philly Startup Leaders and Technically Philly, NextFab, Zivtech, and the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator. In addition, PIDC has also made investments in the Science Center’s QED program and in DreamIt Ventures, which established its global headquarters at 3401 Market Street on Drexel University’s campus.

 

“Companies large and small are increasingly moving to Philadelphia because they have access to an incredible talented workforce, high quality of life, and a growing support system for entrepreneurs” said Alan Greenberger, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development. “This is a very exciting and promising development for the future of our city’s tech ecosystem.”

 

For more information about Startup PHL please visit www.startupphl.com. For more information about Think Brownstone please visit www.thinkbrownstone.com.

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Press Release, Topics, Transportation & Utilties

Statement On The Cigarette Tax And School Funding

In response to comments Governor Tom Corbett made today in support of the enactment of a cigarette tax, Mayor Michael A. Nutter, Council President Darrell Clarke, Philadelphia School District Superintendent Dr. William Hite, School Reform Commission Chair Bill Green and President and CEO of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce Rob Wonderling released the following statement:

“We very much appreciate the Governor’s strong support for a cigarette tax that will benefit Philadelphia school children.  We also are thankful for the General Assembly’s continuing support for this measure.  We hope this vital tax enabling legislation is enacted as soon as possible.  The local revenue at issue is critically important to the ongoing operations of the School District of Philadelphia.  These funds will help ensure that our schools open on time and will help avoid severe reductions in staffing that could compromise the District’s ability to meet its educational mission or operate safely.”

Mayor Michael A. Nutter

Council President Darrell Clarke

Dr. William R. Hite, Superintendent, Philadelphia School District

Bill Green, Chair, School Reform Commission

Rob Wonderling, President and Chief Executive Officer, Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Press Release
Top Rated Posts
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 150 other followers