This semester, construction began on a $199 million student housing complex on 12th Street near Montgomery Avenue. The new apartment building, named the View II, will be built adjacent to the View at Montgomery.
The Goldenberg Group, the owner and developer of the building, promised the new building will have a dedicated community space for North Philadelphia residents, specifically for children or the elderly.
The Temple News is optimistic about the inclusion of a community space in a student housing complex. After all, generations of North Philadelphia residents grew up and lived here long before most current Temple students. Now that we live and learn in their community, we must remember to give back.
But some community groups aren’t so certain about the Goldenberg Group’s promises. Over the summer, the Yorktown Community Organization requested a permanent office space in the View II. Currently, the organization doesn’t have a regular meeting space.
But in August, the Goldenberg Group denied the request.
“They’re not giving us what we’re asking for,” said Robert McMichael, the president of the Yorktown Community Organization. “You can be in contact, but if you’re not really serving the community, it’s an ego thing.”
It’s a shame that the Goldenberg Group has already rejected a proposal for community space in the View II, especially since it would directly respond to some of the community’s needs.
At this point, it is unclear exactly how the Goldenberg Group plans to give back to the North Philadelphia community. But if the Goldenberg Group is promising a dedicated community space, it should also engage with North Philadelphia residents to ensure the space is meeting their needs. Otherwise, the promise of a community space is lackluster at best.