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State of Center City:

Accelerating Growth in Philadelphia

Tuesday, April 24, 8:30 AM

The Union League
140 South Broad Street
Meade Room


Harold Epps, Director of Commerce, City of Philadelphia
Gerard H. Sweeney, President, Chief Executive Officer and Trustee, Brandywine Realty Trust
Paul R. Levy, Executive Director, CPDC: Release of the State of Center City report

Philadelphia is enjoying the longest period of economic expansion in the last 50 years, adding 55,100 jobs since 2010 and showing positive growth in all but one year since 2005. For a city that has been contracting since the 1950s, this is very good news. However, by national, urban standards, things should be significantly better.

Philadelphia is hindered by an antiquated municipal tax system that taxes what easily moves – employee wages and business revenues – which is out of sync with hyper-mobile, 21st century, post-industrial realities. This is a prime reason for Philadelphia’s high poverty and unemployment rates and why 40% of working residents from each City Council District outside of the downtown are reverse commuting to the suburbs each day. It is also why instead of growing at the average growth rate of America’s largest cities (2.3%) and adding more than 100,000 jobs, Philadelphia has been growing at a rate of 1.4% per year and added half that amount since 2010.

Now is the time for the City to focus on high-growth policies that capitalize on recent positive trends and realize Philadelphia’s full potential. Our success in the 21st century must be built upon a relentless impatience with the status quo.

Come to the release of CPDC/CCD’s annual State of Center City report and hear from a panel on how Philadelphia can adopt policies that promote job growth in all sections of the city, as well as in surrounding, slow-growth suburbs.

CPDC members are encouraged to invite both young professionals and other members of their firms to attend this meeting.

Please RSVP to Romina Gutierrez by Wednesday, April 18, at rgutierrez@centercityphila.org or 215.440.5543.