Johnson, South Phila. Residents Protest Car Crunching Scrap Yard
by RORY McGLASSON
AN ANGRY GROUP of South Philadelphia residents threw the first punch in what might be a long scrap with a noisy neighbor tonight.
At a rally on Wednesday, around 50 neighbors from the Packer Park area stood with Councilman Kenyatta Johnson at 2600 Penrose Avenue, home of a New Jersey-based recycling company SPC Corp.
They are outraged at the late-night noise the car crunching scrap yard makes in the area.
Johnson wants to help the neighbors get the company to move out because the noise is polluting the area.
“The noise pollution from the car crushing company is totally unacceptable and its operation is destroying the quality of life homeowners in the area,” Johnson said. “I’m demanding accountability in the operation of the SPC Metal Recycling Company and stopping the boom! of noise pollution.”
Angry residents, young and old, held signs that read “Stop the boom.”
Johnson is upset that the company, which operates near the bottom of the Platt Memorial Bridge, have gone back on its promise to move to New Jersey. Johnson said SPC promised to move out to New Jersey by the summer, but have applied to renew its operating permit, which expires this July.
“Applying to renew a license doesn’t look like a company that is planning on a move to me,” he said.
SPC Corp. is owned by Camden Iron & Metal, Inc. in Camden, NJ, one of the largest metal recyclers in the nation. It’s President, Joseph Balzano, said the company has been trying to move out for the last ten years, but funding promised under the Rendell Administration, and a commitment to its 75 employees,Â have stalled the move.
Residents of Packer Park, The Enclaves, Siena Place stood outside of the plant with their signs. They are upset because they want to stop loud explosions and other nuisances.
According to Johnson’s office, officials from the plant had promised in April 2012 that the company would be moving back to Camden, its home base, after its new shredder was installed there.Â The company has since applied to renew its permit to continue operating here in Philadelphia, Johnson said.
The current operating permit for SPC Corp. expires in July.
Representatives of SPC Corps. will meet with residents at a community meeting in February. Round two.