2 moves in City Council take Temple University to task

Darrell Clarke took aim at his district's largest employer.

Pat Loeb
October 11, 2018 - 6:27 pm
Darrell Clarke

Steve Tawa | KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- Temple University took a beating during Philadelphia City Council's weekly session on Thursday.

City Council President Darrell Clarke made two moves aimed at his district's largest employer. 

He withdrew legislation the university needs to build its proposed Alpha Center, providing early childhood education and behavior health services to the community. 

Clarke had introduced the zoning change legislation, earlier this year, but it languished on council's calendar as, week after week, neighbors came to complain about it during public hearings.

Clarke said he withdrew the bill because there was no community support for the project. 

"There's a number of issues both in terms of location, in terms of community input, in terms of other issues related to existing providers for pre-K in the area," he said. "I don't think they approached this in the right way."

He also introduced a bill regulating "rooftop conduct," which he says is related, in that it targets rowdy Temple students, a source of friction between the university and its neighbors.

"They're sitting on roofs, having activities, playing football, looking down at people's skylights, drinking," Clarke said. 

All that plus tanning and running across roofs would be punishable by fines and prison under the legislation he introduced.

Temple emailed a statement saying its police respond to complaints and students are held responsible for their actions. 

But losing its work on the Alpha Center bill may be a harsher blow. 

Its statement says it believes the center will provide valuable services to its neighbors and it will continue to work with them on a plan.