The Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation (PCDC) was presented two awards at the Philadelphia Association of CDCs (PACDC)’s 25th Anniversary Awards Gala on April 18th.
Director of Planning Sarah Yeung received a Rising Star Award, which recognizes individual achievement in community development. PCDC and Project HOME’s joint affordable housing development Francis House of Peace, Ping An House (平安樓) won the Blue Ribbon Award amidst a pool of strong contenders.
Sarah Yeung has worked tirelessly with PCDC, heralding many of the organization’s recent major successes including, in 2016, the U.S. DOT’s Every Place Counts Award to reimagine the Vine Street Expressway as a neighborhood-friendly street, the formation of the Coalition of Fair Housing in response to Philadelphia’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing process, and securing the Federal Home Loan Bank AHP Grant for PCDC’s 12th Street Family Home scattered site affordable housing rental project. Sarah is also the project manager of the Eastern Tower Community Center, the largest building project to be carried out by a CDC in Philadelphia.
Francis House of Peace, Ping An House (平安樓) is a culturally-integrative affordable housing project jointly developed by PCDC and Project HOME. Over half of the residents were formerly homeless; the other half are low-income and at-risk; a significant percentage of residents and staff come from the Chinatown community. This collaboration between a citywide nonprofit and a community-based organization helped the project connect with Philadelphia’s most needy, and then integrated them into their new community. “The essence of this project is mindful cooperation and cross-cultural program,” said PCDC Deputy Director Rachel Mak.
The Gala was held at WHYY in Center City Philadelphia. Other notable honorees included Quarter Century Award winners Judy Berkman, Mark Levin, and Mark Schwartz of Regional Housing Legal Services; Lifetime Achievement Award winners Sandy Salzmann of New Kensington CDC and William A. Smith of Citizens Bank; and Community Leader Award winner Lucinda Hudson of Parkside Association of Philadelphia.
These awards mark a very successful and forward-looking year for PCDC, which has made significant breakthroughs in its housing developments, and is in the process of drafting an updated Chinatown Neighborhood Plan.