A new face greeted neighbors Nov. 11 at the East Torresdale Civic Association meeting.
Tim Ryan, who recently took over Maggie’s Waterfront Cafe from founder Kevin Goodchild, told residents he is aware of the issues surrounding the bar and wants to “mend some broken relationships.”
Ryan, a Father Judge High School graduate, said he lives three blocks from Maggie’s and worked there before buying the business.
Goodchild and ETCA members often clashed, at community meetings and in court. Most recently, the sides have been battling in Commonwealth Court over Maggie’s ability to operate an outdoor patio. The Department of Licenses and Inspections shut down the patio in September.
Neighbors have long blamed the bar for disturbing the surrounding area and causing quality-of-life issues.
Last week’s meeting also addressed the possibility of speed bumps or cushions for Linden, Arendell and Delaware avenues.
It’s a topic that has been percolating in East Torresdale for years. Mark Morrison, who handles street issues for ETCA, said the city was prepared to put cushions on Linden, but the effort was halted following concerns from residents.
At least 75 percent of homeowners on a street must agree to cushions before they are installed. Each road would be handled separately, and residents would not have input on where the bumps or cushions are installed, Morrison said.
ETCA President Joe Carson said he would like to invite someone to a future meeting to discuss traffic-calming measures. An email survey may also be sent out to members.
A few residents at the meeting said they are opposed to bumps and cushions.
For the past few months, ETCA has discussed a private sewer system that covers a portion of the neighborhood, in light of a proposal to build a new house on Fitler Street and connect it to the sewer.
That conversation continued at the Nov. 11 meeting. Carson said an idea has been floated to have the Philadelphia Water Department take over the sewer.
However, resident John Neill, who identified himself as a plumber, said the city will not assume control over a private sewer, though the city could condemn it if there are major problems.
Bill Kennedy, a resident whose property is connected to the sewer, said water department officials told neighbors in 2014 that the sewer is at capacity. He worries another house on Fitler Street and potential further development could strain the system.
“This is something that’s got to be stopped because of the sewer,” Kennedy said.
Neighbors have mulled the possibility of forming a homeowners association to control access to the system.
The ETCA’s next scheduled meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 9, at All Saints’ Episcopal Church, 9601 Frankford Ave. ••
Jack Tomczuk can be reached at email@example.com.