The city expects that approval for Occupy Philadelphia’s permit to move across the street from Dilworth Plaza could come early next week – but with strings attached. “What we made clear is that the conditions that have come to exist around Dilworth Plaza will not be allowed to continue at any future location,” said Mark McDonald, Mayor Nutter’s spokesman. About 300 tents have been crammed into the plaza, which is on the west side of City Hall. McDonald did not specify what limits the city would seek on Occupy’s new encampment.
McDonald said one faction of Occupy Philadelphia submitted paperwork yesterday to begin the permit process, which he expects will be cleared before Thanksgiving. That faction, led by the Reasonable Solutions group, seeks to move directly across the street from their City Hall encampment to Thomas Paine Plaza at the Municipal Services Building. Occupy Philadelphia attempted to move last night amid confusion as it was rebuffed by city officials, including the mayor, who said the group did not have a permit for a new site.
However, McDonald also said a more strident faction has also notified the city that it will submit a separate application to relocate. He said no location has yet been specified in writing. Occupy Philadelphia was warned it would be evicted this week so a planned renovation of Dilworth Plaza could be begin. A majority of the group voted late last night to move peacefully to Thomas Paine Plaza. Some Occupy Philadelphia stalwarts said this morning as they awoke that they embrace the move to Paine, and that they intend to fully cooperate with the city. “We’re all going to move,” said Gregory Luce, 53, a Philadelphia resident. “We want to do what’s right for the city.” Luce, who identified himself as a member of the safety committee, has camped at City Hall since the beginning of the protest on Oct. 6, 44 days ago.
- Occupy Philadelphia moves to Thomas Paine Plaza, then back to Dilworth (philly.com)
- Occupy Philly on the move to Thomas Paine Plaza (philly.com)
- Divided Occupy protest at turning point? (philly.com)