Boys and Girls Club causes debate whether to protect it with historic designation

- An aging and decrepit Boys and Girls Club in Philadelphia’s Germantown neighborhood is at the center of a heated debate whether to protect it with an historic designation or allow the club to find its own way to improve things. 

The Reverend Allan Robinson gave FOX 29's Bruce Gordon a tour of what used to be the basement gym at the Germantown Boys and Girls Club.

Every rain brings fresh flooding AND a pump works nonstop.

This club is the lifeblood of the neighborhood for nearly 200 children who use the facility from morning until night Monday through Friday.

Sadly, its building on Penn Street just off Germantown Avenue is falling apart in some cases quite literally.

The Penn Knox Neighborhood Association is fighting to place this 120-year-old building under an historic designation, which would save it from demolition with the goal of someday returning it to its former glory.

However, supporters of the club say that designation would include restrictions that would make it impossible for them to do the expansive— and expensive—renovations they have in mind.

"Any historical designation on this building would destroy our opportunity to develop, build and strengthen our community to secure our children’s future," Robinson said.

The people Penn Knox did not return our calls or emails but have noted in the past that neighborhood plans to demolish and renovate or expand this facility have been puttering along for several years with little progress.

Throughout this years-long dispute, they have raised concerns about the additional traffic that would be generated by an expanded facility.

Parents just want what’s best for their kids and don’t see that happening right now.



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