Philly Post contributor Tim Whitaker, the standup chap behind the non-profit program Mighty Writers, is coming to the defense of Stephen Starr in his column today, following the restaurateur’s comments to the Insider earlier this week that he’s through with Philly following Il Pittore’s opening this fall. Whitaker says Starr is spot on in his criticism of the city and its leaders for turning their backs on “established neighborhoods,” namely South Street, rather than nurturing their potential as restaurant and retail destinations. And of all Philadelphians, Starr would know.
From Old City to Washington Square to Center City and beyond, his restaurants have been strengthening neighborhoods and encouraging renewal efforts in them from one end of the city to the other for the last 16 or so years since he opened Continental. Sure Starr is right, but what has us up in arms is, if he’s so dismayed over the sad state of South Street, why doesn’t he start opening some restaurants there? The old site of his Ripley Music Hall at 610-612 (that’s the old Tower Records and later Walgreen’s space for youngsters reading) would be a great place to start.
Stephen Starr Stands Up for South Street [The Philly Post]
Stephen Starr has had enough of Philly [Insider]
Earlier: Stephen Starr Finally Finds a Home For Il Pittore