Questions For Hilco Redevelopment Partners Regarding the Bellwether District

By The DAG Steering Committee

The Bellwether District



Following our July DAG Monthly Meeting, these questions were developed by the DAG Steering Committee and event attendees. These questions were shared with Hilco Redevelopment Partners for comment to continue the discourse regarding this critical property. Once answers are available, they will be added to this page.



  1. Is a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) currently being negotiated? Are activist groups like Philly Thrive and the Grays Ferry Neighbors organization involved in planning and development? If so, what are the roles of these groups? Can current CBA progress be shared?

  2. How much in total do you plan to invest in community workforce development? How are you measuring your progress towards that goal? Will that progress be publicly reported?

  3. Will you be doing public procurements for all the various aspects of the work?

  4. How many residents of adjacent communities are currently working at the site? How many community residents have now completed pre-apprenticeship programs and become apprentices in the trades?

  5. Is there a guarantee for job creation designated specifically for near neighbors?

  6. Is there a timeline for securing tenants to correspond with the construction timeline that was shared with DAG?



  1. How does Hilco anticipate that truck traffic serving the logistics campus, and the resultant pollution, will affect residents of nearby communities? Have any traffic studies been conducted? Has Hilco modeled the potential impact of air pollution from diesel trucks?

  2. Are the immediate infrastructure/roadways planned to be improved and/or widened to handle increased truck traffic? 

  3. The intersection of Penrose/Platt Bridge & 26th Street has proven an issue for motorists for years. Will this intersection be improved or bypassed because of your project?

  4. Are you committed to connecting to the Schuylkill River Trail now planned to end on the West Bank at Passyunk Avenue? What are the covenants and restrictions regarding bike paths that were referenced during your presentation to DAG?

  5. Can sections of the 1,300-acre site be remediated to a greater extent, allowing for necessary programming such as recreation and childcare to occur on site? Has Hilco incorporated such programming into their plans?

  6. Regarding environmental remediation. Is the remediation work plan approved by the Pennsylvania DEP and the EPA and how far along are you on it? What levels of remediation will apply to the different districts of the site?

  7. Considering Bellwether’s proximity to the river, will shipping to and from the site via water be included in the plan?



  1. Can you confirm the decommissioning of all the oil tank farms? Will there be no continued use of fossil fuel infrastructure on the former refinery site?

  2. What is the flood impact on surrounding communities of raising the site? Has the FEMA study regarding flooding been made available publicly?

  3. Do you plan to build all-electric buildings? PGW recently received conditional approval from the Philadelphia Gas Commission to spend $400,000 extending gas lines to the Bellwether District, pending signed contracts with Hilco. Does Hilco plan to sign a contract with PGW, or can Hilco instead commit to all-electric construction?

  4. Why has Hilco not committed to “fossil-free” redevelopment as Philly Thrive and other organizations have called for, and is necessary given the climate change we are experiencing, including construction and ongoing operations?

  5. Would Hilco consider committing to green building certifications such as LEED, Green Globes, or WELL? Has Geothermal been considered for HVAC systems?

  6. Considering the large scale of paved area being proposed, what strategies will be employed for capturing and cleaning storm water?

  7. Have you verified that your plan meets the requirements of the Philly Tree Plan? Can you speak more to your commitment to this critical site improvement and long-term plans for care and maintenance.