Penn expands, Bwog expounds

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A few days ago, the University of Pennsylvania rolled out its shiny new plan for a huge construction project on its eastern edge. Bwog’s mind jumps to Columbia’s own troubled efforts in Manhattanville—but the parallels are a little more complicated. A few facts:

– The cost of Penn’s expansion is about the same, $6.7 billion to Manhattanville’s $7.

– The area to be developed is about twice as big, at 42 acres to Manhattanville’s 17.

– Unlike Manhattanville, nobody lives in the Postal Lands, the 20-acre parcel that Penn just purchased to build on–it really is an industrial wasteland.

– The community doesn’t care. Even the main gadfly group, Neighbors Against McPenntrification (which fought previous expansions as well as Penn’s deal with McDonalds) seems to be okay with it, as are Penn students.

– Two of CU’s recently-appointed Executive Vice Presidents, David Stone (Communications) and Maxine Griffith (Government and Community Affairs) have intimate experience with previous Penn expansions, he as a strategic communications and community outreach consultant for the University and she as Director of the Philadelphia Planning Commission. PrezBo seems to think the two schools have some commonalities.

– The two universities are facing completely different zoning situations. Whereas CU has to wade through layers of tape in an area that’s zoned for mixed residential and commercial use, Philly has essentially no city plan, which makes it a lot simpler for Penn to take over 42 acres with little to no serious complaint.

Pennhattanville? Not quite.

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  1. shitholes

    don't need to be zoned

  2. thanks to

    tao tan for writing this. why don't you just make it official and call him the editor? 3/4 post ideas come from him, I think.

  3. DHI

    "Manhattanville's $7"

    Damn, yo.

    That's a cheap expansion.

    Cheaper than those overpriced "Quiznos" subs.

    Fuck Quizno's, man.

  4. paulson?

    treasury secretary makes his first major speech at columbia and bwog has extensive analysis of something happening at penn?

  5. competition

    harvard and penn are going to crush us with their expansions. columbia is going to wither and die because we feel too sorry about forcing a few people and many more auto body shops to relocate.

  6. i'm poster #1

    and i just want to state that i meant my comment not as an endorsement of the manhattanville plan (which i do cautiously support) but rather as a rip on the foul stenched institution known as upenn, which is located in the similarily smelling cow town of philly--nice year last year iggles

  7. don't hate on philly

    you probably only came here to see penn, anyway. (and it's "penn" NOT "upenn," as anyone who is from here or goes to penn knows).

    • actually

      that distinction belongs to PENN STATE. How many people have complemented you on Joe Paterno's performance last year so far?

    • first site to pop up

      on a google search for 'penn' is the university of pennsylvania you silly trogdolyte

      nice year last year iggles. time to bring the brown bags out (i'll continue the bashing until it's acknowledged by the swath of unhygenic columbia students who walk around in dawkins/mcnabb jerseys)

    • Um, no.

      It's UPenn because Penn equals Pennsylvania State U, a totally different school. I don't know a single person who went to UPenn or lives in Philly and calls it just Penn because everyone would think they meant the state school, not the Ivy league school.

  8. uh

    who cares? philly smells rank. also, creepy men catcall me in the streets there. this never happens in ny.

  9. born'n'bred

    Say what you will, but Philly has better food than your hometown. Or any town you've ever been to.

    And not just cheesesteaks, mister hilarious probable-next-commenter. Though those are delicious, too.

  10. philly

    is also the most obese city in the country. bon apetit!

    • makes sense why

      23 thinks philly has the best food.

      even pork rinds taste good in your trailer park phillyites

      and who else loves the irony of the uncouth philly urbanite who first poo poo'ed steak and asked why we can't add a slice of american to it

      • don't call it a comeback

        From Wikipedia:

        "Philadelphia has more restaurants scoring a 29 in the 2005 Zagat Restaurant Guide than any other city."


        • Ah!

          Zagat really isn't the best method of rating quality between cities. Customers submit reviews, presumably rating based only on their relative experiences with other restaurants within that city.

          In other words, Phili restaurant-goers clearly think highly of their own restaurants, though you can't compare that to New York's restaurant scene, which, objectively speaking, is clearly superior.

          Have you ever been to high-20 restaurants in Chicago, Minneapolis, or other smaller cities? There are some great restaurants in that group, sure, but they wouldn't rate nearly as well if they existed within New York's restaurant world. Zagat Inflatiom, in a sense.

      • Wha?  

        steak with a piece of american on it? you don't actually know what a cheesesteak is, do you?

        • are you stupid?

          look a phillyite who doesn't even know about their own vaunted cheesesteaks (ask the fellas at geno's to help you out)--cheesesteaks use provolone and two other classy types that appeal to 29 and 31: american and impeccable cheese wiz


          as for the most 29's..i imagine that the quality of service and decor for cheesesteak shacks probably doesn't have that high a threshold in order to be rated really highly

  11. um NO

    none of you are from philly, obviously. nobody who goes to penn state calls it "penn" - so there would be no reason for the confusion. get it straight.

  12. i'll admit philly isn't

    a shining city on a hill.

    but we're better than pittsburgh

  13. blurgh

    I love how a substantive post about real estate has turned into a foodfight.

  14. i hate philly

    and i was born there

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