The city-owned Leighton G. Knipe House has sat, dilapidated and in dire need of TLC, on its lot on 2nd and Portland streets for years, and its unfortunate fire damage (alleged arson) this past spring has only worsened the conditions on this c. 1909 home.
Today, the City of Phoenix Historic Preservation Commission will meet to discuss the Knipe’s fate, and your voice can be heard. The meeting will review the report findings and recommendations of local architect Bob Graham, ask for public comment, and discuss the feasibility and/or appropriateness of using Historic Preservation Bond funds (and other available funding) to make the needed repairs (approximately in the $100,000 range just to fix the fire damage).
Options include reconstructing the fire-damaged portions, weather-tightening the building, holding on (hopefully) until the economy recovers and then seeking an adaptive reuse partner, or demolishing it due to cost. If the latter is chosen, it will result in another dirt lot in an already dirt-filled Evans Churchill neighborhood.
Even before the recent fire, the Knipe House was listed on the Phoenix Historic Neighborhood Coalition’s Most EnDangered Dozen Historic Places List. The lot size allows for on-site parking if a refurbishing is undertaken.
The “Save the Knipe” meeting takes place this afternoon at 4:30 at Historic City Hall, 130 W. Washington St., second floor. If you cannot attend the meeting and still want to share your thoughts, please email City of Phoenix Historic Preservation Officer Barbara Stocklin at email@example.com.
Mayor Gordon appointed to EPA advisory committee
Phoenix mayor Phil Gordon was recently appointed to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Local Government Advisory Committee, representing mayors across the U.S.
The EPA’s Local Government Advisory Committee provides advice and recommendations to its administrator, assists in developing a stronger partnership with local governments and helps build state and local capacity to deliver environmental services and programs. The mayor’s two-year term began on August 30.
MMDNA turns two
The Midtown Museum District Neighborhood Association is turning 2 years old on Wednesday, September 15 at 6:30 p.m. A celebration will be held at the Fairfield Inn and Suites (2520 N. Central Ave.) in Midtown Phoenix. Come enjoy light refreshments and hear keynote speaker Councilman Tom Simplot.
Windsor, Churn coming to Uptown
Postino’s Craig DeMarco just can’t stay busy enough, so he’s opening two new concepts on the Postino on Central block north of Camelback Road. Churn, an artisan ice cream house featuring pastries and coffee, will pair up next door to Windsor, an “all-American” restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. The side-by-side concepts, scheduled to open in November, were recently penned on Arizona Republic food critic Howard Seftel’s “10 most anticipated new restaurants for 2010-11.”
In my previous post, I stated:
The true mark of a vibrant urban core isn’t the popularity of special events like ball games, conventions or even First Fridays. Rather it is the events that fill in the gaps in between these. It is the creation of a 24/7 culture where things are going on every day (and night) of the week. While I wouldn’t say that we have quire arrived there, we are a lot closer that it may appear.
In addition to the many events that occur at least once a week, there are also several monthly events going on around Downtown Phoenix. Taken together, these events should provide ample opportunity to get out, meet new people and become active players in a vibrant downtown community.
Here are 10 events to get you started:
Free drop-in workshops on the first Tuesday of every month. No need to register, just come and get a free intro to improv.
A costumed/themed drawing workshop every second Tuesday of the month, from 8 to 11 p.m. at the Lost Leaf.
“Romp through Arizona history with stories and images” the second Thursday of every month at Phoenix Metro Retro.
A Saturday morning gathering of brunch-loving people. It’s not an exclusive club of snobbish foodies, rather a group of people who like to get together and share a great brunch with new and old friends. Smunch almost always takes place on the second Saturday of the month at 10:30 a.m.
5. Craft night at Butter Toast Boutique
This vintage boutique gets creative on second Saturdays from 5 to 8 p.m.
6. Get Your PHX
The goal of Get Your PHX is to support those who pioneer new restaurants, stores, bars and event spaces and to provide a chance for you to meet others like you, who want to get the most out of Phoenix. It takes place on the next-to-last Thursday of every month at various locations in and around Downtown.
A potluck-style community dinner celebrating great buildings and amazing people in Central Phoenix on the third Saturday evening of every month.
Switching off monthly between fiction and non-fiction on the fourth Wednesday of every month at MADE art boutique.
A community networking group of people who care about place making, design, community building and our vital urban core on the last Tuesday of every month at various at various locations in and around Downtown. (Disclaimer: RadiatePHX is an initiative of Urban Affair, publisher of DPJ.)
10. Critical Mass
A bicycle celebration ride to raise awareness about bicyclists on the road and cars sharing the road on the last Friday of each month. The starting point is Steel Indian School Park, near the Indian School Road and 3rd Street entrance.
Once again, I’m sure that I am missing a lot of other events that occur on a monthly basis in and around Downtown. If you would like to add anything to the list, please add a comment!
As mentioned in a previous post, the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) has begun its next long-range, multimodal transportation study for Central Phoenix (CPHX). One of the criticisms that came out of the initial focus groups was the definition of Central Phoenix as stretching between from Loop 101 to the west, north and east, and Loop 202 and the Gila River Indian Community to the south. Several participants felt that this was too vast of an area to look at all at once.
It turns out that the CPHX team had already acknowledged and planned for this. Starting next week, the study team is hosting a series of seven “geographically based dialogues” throughout its vast study area. These dialogues will take a closer look at regional connectivity, and begin to identify issues and opportunities for a future multimodal transportation framework in each specific area.
The two dialogues session that may be of most interest to DPJ readers are:
V. Downtown: August 16, 9 a.m.
Maricopa Association of Governments, Saguaro Room
302 N. 1st Ave., Phoenix, AZ (map)
Served by METRO light rail and bus routes via Central Station
Register by clicking HERE.
If we learned one thing at last week’s RadiatePHX event at Durant’s, it’s this: Wow, we’re a good looking bunch. We schmoozed, we introduced ourselves, we nibbled on cheese and salami on a stick. Most importantly, we got together to celebrate Phoenix and create a more cohesive sense of community. Steve Weiss of Candid Landscapes was kind enough to take a few moments to snap some photographic evidence. Enjoy!
All photos by Steve Weiss/Candid Landscapes