Epic Win!

Today the Honorable Ellen Ceisler of the Court of Common Pleas found in favor of the appellants in Lewis, et al. v. Zoning Board of Adjustment, et al., stating that there was no hardship and thus no reason for the variances to be granted.

The developers in question in this case had sought variances to completely demolish two historic yet dilapidated (but salvageable) marble bank buildings at the corner of Front and Norris Streets in East Kensington.  The developers sought to cram in a large, dense, multi-unit housing project for impoverished women and children directly under the El.  Furthermore, the local civic association had sold the parcel to the developer subject to a mortgage – a typical Philly move.  Thanks to a number of concerned neighbors who appealed the decision and my good friends the Fishtown Lawyers, the bank buildings remain. The banks were and continue to be a link to Kensington’s vibrant industrial past and a symbol of potential for the neighborhood going forward.  I am proud to have represented the local civic associations, East Kensington Neighbors Association and Fishtown Neighbors Association as well as another individual stakeholder, as amicus counsel in this matter.  Just part of giving back to a great neighborhood and proving that on occasion the system does actually work.

More coverage http://www.philadelinquency.com/?p=3142.

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Devil’s in the Details

Just got back an arbitration award in favor of the Defendant (my client) in a collection case.  This was a case that frankly, I was not confident I was going to win.  The panel agreed with my argument that the complaint was brought outside the applicable statute of limitations, which in this case was a 3-year limitation under the state law applicable to the contract at issue.  Attorneys often argue statutes of limitations, unclean hands, and other standard new matters as a matter of course, without a second thought.  Yesterday the details mattered, and because of that my client prevailed.  Sure, it’s the arbitration stage, and the collector may yet appeal, but victory is still pretty sweet.