Meet the Candidates: Allan Domb


Domb was an at-large City Council member from 2016 to 2022, when he resigned to run for mayor. He owns a real estate firm and is known as the “Condo King.”

On protecting trees and natural spaces

I agree that Philadelphia must do more to protect its current tree canopy and, as much as possible, add to it as part of an overall commitment to improving our environment. Philadelphia has one of the best park systems, ranging from large parks to neighborhood pocket-parks, as well as a significant number of trees lining streets across the city that should be preserved and protected. As a first step, I will fully support the goals of Philly Tree Plan and work with community groups to ensure that every community, but especially environmental justice neighborhoods, are fully represented and are able to add to their local tree canopy.

Secondly, I will ensure full implementation of the recently enacted legislation sponsored by Councilmember Katherine Gilmore Richardson which prioritizes tree protection and replacement during development projects.

Finally, I will fully fund Philadelphia’s public parks programs, with regular public reporting on protection efforts.

On flooding in Eastwick

If Philadelphia is going to maintain its reputation as a City of Neighborhoods, we need to make sure that we do all that is necessary to protect them. The flooding that Eastwick has too often suffered through — including the heavy damage Tropical Storm Isaias inflicted in 2020 — threatens the neighborhood itself, in addition to the investment its residents have made in their homes. I was encouraged to see that the city’s Office of Emergency Management is moving forward with a plan to create specific emergency alerts to protect Eastwick residents.

As mayor, I will support zoning changes, including limits on the type of development that can occur, to protect Eastwick. I will also work with Licenses and Inspections and community groups to increase the number of residents protected by flood insurance.

Finally, I will use some portion of the funding available to the city as part of the federal infrastructure bill passed in 2021 to improve the local infrastructure, including improved sewers, to handle any rainfall.

On improving bicycling in Philadelphia

I am disappointed that Philadelphia has not used the slowdown the COVID-19 pandemic forced upon us all to fundamentally rethink how people will commute and use our streets. We have seen that people are choosing to work differently, including working from home more frequently, and should have used the opportunity that lower traffic presented to provide more options.

As mayor, I will support efforts to make biking safer by using local, state and federal infrastructure funds to fix our roads, and, if appropriate, build dedicated bike lanes. While not every street can or should have a protected bike lane, we should create a system of dedicated bike lanes across the city similar to how we have arterial streets. As mayor, I will work with the city’s Streets Department and community groups to identify priorities for this expansion.

As mayor, I will make rebuilding our city’s workforce a priority from my first day in office, with special emphasis on the city’s Department of Licenses and Inspections.”

Photography by Chris Baker Evens.

On sustainable development and the understaffed L&I

The large number of open positions in agencies across government is one of the biggest challenges our City faces as it tries to provide even basic services effectively and equitably.

As mayor, I will make rebuilding our City’s workforce a priority from my first day in office, with special emphasis on the City’s Department of Licenses and Inspections. The City must do more to fully staff L&I and plan to better handle any demolition and construction projects, ensure only licensed and responsible firms are doing work in the city, and that sites are regularly monitored.

The need to fill these positions, a significant portion of which do not require a college degree but rather specific training, provides an opportunity to help address the city’s poverty through active recruitment of city residents. Unfortunately, the current administration has failed at any attempt to recruit and train workers for City departments. As mayor, I will do what the Kenney administration has failed to do: recruit Philadelphia residents to fill City jobs.

On addressing the city’s backslide on waste management

I will make stopping illegal dumping and improving recycling a priority in every neighborhood (recognizing that a significant portion of illegal dumping, if not a majority, occurs in environmental justice neighborhoods). I will additionally move to clean every lot in my first 100 days, install monitoring capabilities at and around frequent dumping locations and dramatically increase the penalties for illegal dumping to include the loss of any professional licenses a company may have.

Additionally, and as detailed above, the City must do more to fully staff the Department of Licenses and Inspections to better handle any demolition and construction projects, ensure only licensed and responsible firms are doing work in the city, and that sites are regularly monitored. Preventing dumping is the best way to ensure that waste is minimized

On using vacant lots to improve the community

As detailed in my community safety plan, in my first 100 days, I will clean every vacant lot because it is well established that vacant lots are too often used to hide criminal activity. While Philadelphia has long known where its vacant lots are, not enough has been done to continually clean them. Modeled after the successful campaign to remove 40,000 abandoned autos from city streets in Mayor John Street’s first 40 days, under my leadership, the City will quickly reclean all vacant and abandoned lots, prioritizing those in high-crime areas.

Additionally, as mayor, I will fix a land bank program that has not met its goals, to ensure that abandoned lots are effectively used to protect and strengthen communities and existing community-based gardens and green spaces are maintained as often as possible.

Grid Magazine’s Mayoral Voters Guide is a part of Every Voice, Every Vote, a collaborative project managed by The Lenfest Institute for Journalism. Lead support is provided by the William Penn Foundation with additional funding from The Lenfest Institute, Peter and Judy Leone, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Harriet and Larry Weiss, and the Wyncote Foundation, among others. To learn more about the project and view a full list of supporters, visit www.everyvoice-everyvote.org. Editorial content is created independently of the project’s donors.

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