Friday, September 14, 2012

RDA, you are a bunch of fucking morons.

1138 South 20th Street

                               In case you missed it in the news today or on Naked Philly, the Redevelopment Authority is coming after OCF's Ori Feibush because he cleaned up a shitty empty lot with FORTY TONS of trash on it. They are seriously coming after a dude who spent $20,000 cleaning up 20 years worth of neighborhood trash. Is this the fucking Bizarro World? From this:

RDA preferred configuration.
                       To this:

                   The RDA is actually trying to sue Ori F. about this. At this point, what is he supposed to do? Find 40 tons of similar trash and re-dump it in the lot? Whoever is running things over at the RDA is fucking bananas. In the news article, Ori states that he's attempted to purchase the lot numerous times and has been rebuffed. Fucking corrupt assholes... I guess he was supposed to hand over unmarked envelopes of cash to a certain person or run through a carwash of giant penises in City Hall to get this done. Instead, threats of a lawsuit for cleaning it up.
                   This makes the city look horrible. How the fuck are we supposed to improve this place if the city government itself does everything it can to stand in the way? What a bunch of corrupt shiftless bastards. I guess Ori's not in the Kickback Corruption Superfriends Club that runs this city. Make sure to tell everyone you know about this and remember this shit when in that voting booth.


Thursday, September 13, 2012

Butt-Fugly Public Art of the Week-- September 13th

I. M. PEI Sculpture Garden: A Tribute by Jill Sablosky

222 South Second Street

                 Hey, I've always liked I.M. Pei. I usually hate shit from the time period he worked in, but a lot of Pei's stuff is pretty darn spiffy. On top of that, his name sounds like a British person saying "I am Pee". His Society Hill Towers helped bring Society Hill up to the kick-ass status it has today. So how do we honor Pei? How did we celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Society Hill Towers? BY NAMING A BUNCH OF FUCKED UP ROCKS AFTER HIM!!!
               I.M Pei Sculpture Garden: A Tribute was installed in 2003 and dedicated on July 30th of the same year. Somehow, these hunks of marble are supposed to honor Pei in some way. The rectangular rock is supposed to be a bench and the other couple of rocks are supposed to be a sundial. It looks more like an iron trying to get wrinkles out of the slate or whatever the fuck that is below. I hate when part of an public art piece is supposed to be a bench... either everyone starts sitting on it and fucking up the artwork, or NOBODY sits on it because its in the middle of a garden and is not obvious as a bench!! Hint hint!!
               I always complain that there's not a lot of newish public art pieces by Philly artists, but this one makes me regret ever saying that. The artist for this one was local, as was the landscape architect and public art consultant. Wait a minute... public art CONSULTANT? That's right, this pile of shit had a public art "consultant". What does such a person do? Obviously they have no responsibility regarding the context or design of a public art piece, so what the fuck?
               I want to be a public art consultant! You know how I know I would do a good job? When I saw something like this being proposed, I would say "IT FUCKING SUCKS!!!". There. I am now more qualified than the public art consultant that oversaw this mess. But seriously... what the fuck was going through their heads?
              From what I can gather, the Italian marble pieces are supposed to be representative of stone formations from Pei's childhood garden. What the FUUUUUCK!?!?! That's a stretch and a half. Maybe for the 50th Anniversary, a new I.M. Pei tribute should be made.... but what would be more appropriate? Well, since pretty much ANYTHING would be more appropriate than this, I propose a statue of Pei taking a shit on a typical Society Hill NIMBY... think about it.
                Society Hill was a slum when Pei found it... he helped the folks taking a risk to bring the neighborhood back by designing these kick-ass towers (in an era of terrible, terrible architecture). Now, almost 50 years later, that same neighborhood carries some of the biggest anti-development Super-NIMBYs-- the most powerful in the city. Had these morons lived there when the Towers were built, they would have demanded silly design change after silly design change, and would have finally lawsuited the developer to death. Newmarket anyone?
             Therefore, my idea of a giant I.M. Pei taking a big dump on a NIMBY would be 700 nonillion times more appropriate than a bunch of shitty marble. I nominate myself as Public Art "Consultant". HA!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Mystery Thing I Don't Know What to Call-- September 12th

Merion Avenue Thing

4900 Merion Ave

What the fuck is this?

               Since the railroad-related Lost Mystery Building of the Week last week made such a stir (go read the comments), I'm coming back with another mystery for the rail nerds out there... if this is, in fact, a rail-related structure... I really don't know.
                The Merion Avenue Thing looks like it might have been a bridge... but where's the rest of it? It doesn't appear on any old maps that I can find. From the top, the Thing looks like it might have an accidental green roof:

               So what in the fuck is it? Normally I'd have a more than a few sentences to tell you about something like this, but I can't find ANYTHING. Its like this bridge segment once existed in an alternate timeline and was brought here by some kind of Einstein-Rosen Bridge. My best guess, according to old aerial photos, is that a small line that came off one of the 600 freight lines that once ran parallel to Merion Ave leapfrogged over the northern property and terminated at the southern one, using that bridge to get there. The Chalfont Coal Co. had that spot for quite awhile.. maybe they were the ones that built this thing.
             That's just speculation... for all I know, it could be a bridge-shaped memorial in memory of a turkey sandwich. This shit is just fucked up. Whatever it was, no one ever seemed to have any motivation to demolish it.. and it doesn't seem to be going anywhere. Does anyone know? Anyone?


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Dead-Ass Proposal of the Week-- September 11th

Gateway Center South

1001 South Broad Street

                   Broad and Washington--what a shitty corner. The largest set of empty lots near the city core, this pitiful corner is the subject of more Dead-Ass Proposals than any other. Here, we're gonna talk about the one that came the closest to happening-- a gigantic super-out-of-scale monster of a project that's probably better off dead.
                 Read more at the Philadelphia Citypaper's Naked City Blog!!


Monday, September 10, 2012

Old-Ass Building of the Week-- September 10th

Chua Bo De

1114 South 13th Street

                This little building sure knows how to survive... from school to club to temple, this everliving piece of shit is still rockin' your socks. Read more at Hidden City Philadelphia!