- The Revitalization of Philadelphia into a Creative Economy   click here to open paper content944 kb
by    Tubbs, Jeffrey | jeffrey.tubbs@rda.phila.gov   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
In an effort to compete globally, Philadelphia must capitalize on three clusters that can be hot spots for creative industries: the University of Pennsylvania, the Avenue of the Arts, and Philadelphia Navy Yard.
Making spaces for the creative economy through urban redevelopment strategies based on the attraction and retention of the creative industries is precisely what is occurring in the Philadelphia Region today. Philadelphia is the 5th largest city in the U.S. with a population of 1.4M. It has the largest per capita concentration of higher education institutions in the US, 80% of the world's major pharmaceutical companies are within a 2-hour drive of Philadelphia, and the City’s cultural institutions are second to none. On the other hand, Philadelphia has one of the highest rates of vacant and under utilized land of any City in the US, jobs have moved outward into the surrounding metropolitan area leaving fewer than 30% of metro area employees working in the central city, the city’s population is aging and has a relatively low educational attainment, and 23% of Philadelphia’s residents lived in poverty.

Philadelphia must orient itself to the daunting challenges of a global economy, while protecting and enhancing its quality as one of the most livable and historically grounded cities in the United States. In order to do this, Philadelphia must capitalize on three clusters that can be hot spots for the Creative Economy: the University of Pennsylvania as one of the pre-eminent research institutions in the United States, the Avenue of the Arts with its award winning Master Plan and the Philadelphia Navy Yard with its vision to become a waterfront community with industrial development, offices, retail, waterfront amenities, research and development, and waterfront residential development. Along with these three vital components to the creative economy, the Mayor’s Neighborhood Transformation Initiative could lead to the revitalization of new creative residential neighborhoods.
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