Who we are:
We are a membership-based organization that, through advocacy, collaboration and commitment, we believe in rebuilding instead of replacing Parkside's assets. We support quality education, mixed income housing and commercial development, guided by practices to achieve a sustainable community.
PBCIP's declared mission is to reverse the decline of Parkside and increase the quality of neighborhood life. The organization seeks to promote its mission through a variety of strategies, including acquisition and rehab of homes with resale to low and moderate-income families. Other goals include increasing public safety; the revitalization of Haddon Avenue commercial district to promote employment and economic development.
PBCIP is a member of
Camden Community Development Association
Over 25 years ago, a group of residents fighting the decline they saw in Parkside organized a single anti-drug march. The march was successful and led to a community wide meeting to explore long term solutions to neighborhood blight. The meeting, in turn, led to the formation of PBCIP as a 501C3 non-profit organization which for most of its existence was run solely by volunteers from the neighborhood.
Today, the organization takes a holistic approach by integrating commercial revitalization, housing and quality-of-life initiatives in order to restore, rather than replace, the neighborhood. PBCIP’s housing effort reached a milestone in 2005 when, for the first time, the organization offered market rate homes for sale, in response to demand from upwardly mobile professionals seeking to live in Parkside.
Oscar R. Spencer, Chairperson
Tasha Gainey-Humphrey, Vice-Chairperson
Colandus "Kelly" Francis, Treasurer
Ryan Chew, Secretary
Yaniece Spencer, Parliamentarian
Dr. Nyeema Watson
For much of its existence, PBCIP was an all-volunteer organization run by residents of the community. Although professional staff was brought on in 1999 as the scope and complexity of PBCIP’s work grew, the board of trustees remains neighborhood-based. Most members reside in Parkside and neighborhood businesses and organizations are represented as well.
Bridget Phifer, Executive Director
Sarah Bailey-Drummond, Financial Director (x. 17)
LaTina Gaines, Administrative Assistant (x. 11)
Sheilah Greene, Community Outreach Specialist (x. 13)
Miosha Lawrence, Homeownership Coordinator (x. 15)
Jonathan Wetstein, Roots to Market Coordinator (x. 12)
Lew Bivona, Roots to Market Coordinator (x. 12)
History of Parkside:
"A STREETCAR SUBURB"
The Parkside neighborhood is a century-old community of Camden, NJ, bordering the towns of Collingswood and Pennsauken.
It was originally developed as an alternative to crowded city living in Philadelphia, where it was advertised by developer John M. Kelley as the first "streetcar suburb." The neighborhood was originally a Jewish community, with a vibrant social life centering around the synagogues as well as the Haddon Avenue business district. The community's namesake is the 70-acre Farnham Park, currently in the midst of a multi-million dollar redevelopment effort being spearheaded by the Trust for Public Land.
Like many urban areas, Parkside transformed to a minority neighborhood in the 1960s and 1970s, and experienced some of the same racial turmoil that plagued cities across the country. Beginning in the 1970s, however, a core group of residents banded together to share their pride in the neighborhood and work together to maintain a solid base of residents who take pride in their neighborhood, fighting the forces of urban blight that were creeping into Camden. This group of neighbors was the precursor to Parkside Business & Community in Partnership, incorporated in 1993, and working since then to transform Parkside once again into a thriving and successful urban residential neighborhood.