Hector's work profiled in Next City

(Photo by Steve Weinik.)

(Photo by Steve Weinik.)

Emma Jacobs writes, "A long-time area for refugee settlement, the densely packed blocks of rowhomes around Mifflin Square are shared by Cambodians and Bhutanese immigrants, African Americans, Latinos, as well as Italian and Irish-descended families who came to the city in earlier waves of immigration. In recent years, the area has also drawn young families seeking homes close to jobs in Center City and within walking distance of East Passyunk, a thriving corridor of shops and restaurants. With the changes have come new concerns about retaining the neighborhood’s diverse fabric and ensuring that longtime residents continue to have a voice in the planning process. 'Urban planning,' says Thoai Nguyen, director of SEAMAAC, 'is steeped in certain methodologies that are opaque. We have staff on hand speak majority of languages in the neighborhood,” says Nguyen, who grew up a block and a half from the square. SEAMAAC has important cultural knowledge, “but for us that was just not enough. You bring people to the table but then how do you have them engage in the process for a meaningful way?'" Read more...