3D Rendering of Impacts on Light without Open Space

I’m so surprised that the Philly ZBA does not require this for all new developments.  It was so easy to create.  The new tech is awesome.  We created a few 3D renderings of the developer’s proposed design of a 3 floor building without open space and then two designs with a small L-shape open space in a 3 floor and then a 2 floor design.  We used www.SketchUp.com a free product for 30 days that also allows you to drop the rendering into Google Earth to get the appropriate shadows through out the year.  Then we used Flashbackrecorder to record the rotating and changing of time through the year.

The first video is of the 3 story version proposed by the developer.  Notice the size in comparison to the house on Manton Street and the garage behind.  The recording and shadows are based on August 30th at about 10:52am for an accurate comparison.

The next video is the 2 story Tiny house that is more appropriate for older residents and people that just want a ting house with a little open space to store trash, bicycles, barbecue or enjoy our giant tree.  Look at the sight lines in the back of the houses.  Just a little bit of open space just 2 to 3 ft just changes everything.

The next video is a capture of the shadow changes for the 3 story no open space design.  What I did was start early in the year and then vary the hours in the day.  After I cycled through the day I then would pick another day a month or two later and cycle through the hours of the day.  I repeated this throughout a standard year.  This is important because the Sun’s angle changes throughout the year and you have to look at more than one day for a good comparison.

Then the same 3 story concept with the small L-Shape open space.  The sight lines and openness really is present even with just a small bit of open space and variation from a plain vanilla box design.

Now here is the same L-shape open space but in a 2 story design.  It is so much better than the 3 story design.  Plus because of building codes for PA, US and international the house can never be more than a one bedroom.  Who wants to travel up 3 flights of stairs to go to the bathroom?

Lastly we create a comparison video of all three designs at the same day and time August 30th at 10:52am.

Tree and Green Space Haters in Philly

Tree and Green Space Haters in Philly

We got a kick out of the comments on Facebook and other sites regarding our campaign to maintain open space and a 80 year old tree in South Philadelphia.  Some will make you laugh and others will make you go what?  Please help save open space in development projects and sign and share our petition today.

https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree

Here are some of the best:

Hey Suburbanites, welcome to Philly, land of concrete. If you want trees everywhere, move back to the Culdesac!

Want more trees. Move to Jersey! Worried about oxygen. Get rid of the factories. Car exhaust. Ride a bike.

If you’re stupid enough to live in an urban environment you should have to take a bus to see a tree.

Really?! Wildlife?!!!! Rabid pigeons? Rats? Roaches… Progress

Other comments for or against were items that one could discuss and debate.  We have learned a lot from all sides and perspectives.

The land of concrete one inspired the cartoon.

Hey look we missed a green spot...more concrete please
Hey look we missed a green spot…more concrete please

Please don’t forget to sign and share our petition to save small open spaces in new developments in Philadelphia.
https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree

https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree
https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree

Gardens on Philadelphia Vacant Lots

With all this muckety muck going on about zoning and use permits and such, we did some research on vacant lots, licenses and gardens and we found this, under Philadelphia Code, Title 9, CHAPTER 9-3900. PROPERTY LICENSES AND OWNER ACCOUNTABILITY:

§ 9-3904. Vacant Lot License.
(1) Required.
(a) The owner of any lot on which no structure is built and no productive activity has been conducted with the owner’s permission for at least the past three (3) months shall obtain a Vacant Lot License.
(b) Exceptions. No license is required for the following:
(i) Vacant lots contiguous to and in common ownership with a vacant lot that has a current vacant lot license. This exception shall include building lots in common ownership within an approved subdivision, provided there is a current vacant lot license for the subdivision tract.
(ii) Vacant lots contiguous to or separated by a driveway from a building where there is common ownership of the lot and the building. This exception includes a contiguous lot owned and maintained by the abutting property owner as a side yard.
(iii) A lot that is continuously maintained as a garden.

The link to the code is here http://library.amlegal.com/nxt/gateway.dll/Pennsylvania/philadelphia_pa/title9regulationofbusinessestradesandpro/chapter9-3900propertylicensesandowneracc?f=templates$fn=default.htm$3.0$vid=amlegal:philadelphia_pa$anc=JD_9-3904

My favorite line is under exceptions paragraph (iii).  So I guess Philadelphia is pro-garden after all. 🙂

We are not lawyers, but the code says what it says. I wonder if they know this?