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Local

Councilman Says Philly Historic Districts Unsightly Because Of Utility Meters

(Councilman William Greenlee.  Image from City of Phila. TV)

(Councilman William Greenlee. Image from City of Phila. TV)

Mike Dunn Mike Dunn
Mike Dunn is City Hall bureau chief for KYW Newsradio 1060. He covers...
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By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A local lawmaker says Philadelphia’s historic districts are getting unsightly because of utility meters placed on the fronts of new homes and now he wants to stop that.

Councilman Bill Greenlee isn’t happy that the city’s utilities often insist on meters being placed on the fronts of homes and he believes it becomes most unsightly in the historic areas.

“Utility companies are making the builder put the meters, both electric and gas in some cases, in the front building. Particularly in the historic districts, that does not seem to fit in with the facade of the developments, and really seems to be, to us, inappropriate. We think it’s certainly aesthetics and just the reality of how historic district construction should look, should be the priority here.”

So Greenlee has introduced a bill that would prohibit front-facing meters in historic districts for new construction or major renovations.

“In new construction, in historic districts, the meters have to be placed inside.”

A spokesperson for PECO said the placement of new meters outside is for safety and access and is the industry standard. She said the utility is committed to working with local municipalities to address any concerns.

PGW did not respond to our request for comment. Greenlee’s measure will be debated in committee.