​​​​​​​The Enterprise Center Community Development Corporation

The Enterprise Center Community Development Corporation (TEC-CDC) is developing a complete local food system as a means to spur economic development, foster a more robust food economy, and increase the consumption of healthy food in and around the Walnut Hill community. The model for this project creates a complete food supply chain by linking previously disparate elements of the food system – production, distribution, and processing – while addressing both health and economic issues in West Philadelphia communities.
The Enterprise Center Community Development Corporation (TEC-CDC) used HFFI financing to support the Center for Culinary Enterprises (CCE) in West Philadelphia. The CCE is a $6-million, 13,000-square-foot, LEED-certified food business accelerator that serves as a hub of community health and nutrition resources. The project will create a total of 112 jobs over a three-year period. TEC-CDC is also helping develop the Philadelphia Restaurant Incubator to allow low-income entrepreneurs and mobile food truck operators to pilot and test their businesses in West Philadelphia. The Philly Restaurant Incubator will create 51 new jobs and result in the launch of at least seven new businesses. 

HFFI Projects and Projected Impacts
West Philly Foods (WPF), Philadelphia, PA

  • Encompasses TEC-CDC's Walnut Hill Community Farm, farm stand, and CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program
  • Development of the farm has turned a neighborhood vacant lot from eyesore to asset
  • Farm stand and CSA program increase access to healthy food for community members, create business opportunities for local food entrepreneurs to sell value-added products, and create jobs through our farm apprenticeship program for young adults from Philadelphia's agricultural high school

Dorrance H. Hamilton Center for Culinary Enterprises (CCE), Philadelphia, PA

  • CCE is a $6.0 million, 13,000 sq. ft. and LEED-certified food business accelerator and hub of community health and nutrition resources in West Philadelphia
  • Opened in 2012 on the site of a previously abandoned grocery store in Walnut Hill
  • Local food entrepreneurs have access to the commercial kitchen space, food storage, and technical assistance necessary to grow their businesses and create new jobs
  • Providing access to commercial kitchen space at affordable rates fills a gap in the regional food industry for food entrepreneur clients, some of whom work on developing value-added products for distribution via the WPF CSA and other local food outlets

The Philadelphia Restaurant Incubator (PRI), Philadelphia, PA

  • Allows aspiring local restaurateurs to "proof" their food business concepts in a short-term, low-risk "pop-up" restaurant setting
  • The restaurant, Common Table, will operate beginning in 2014 out of a retail space in the CCE building and feature month-long rotations of aspiring restaurateurs
  • Entrepreneurs will benefit from staffing and technical assistance, with the goal of eventually placing successful participants in permanent brick-and-mortar locations on revitalized local commercial corridors

Summary of Projected Impacts

  • 112 jobs created over 3 years
  • Collaboration with diverse group of stakeholders, community groups, and investors
  • Creation of West Philly Foods CSA with 132 shares expected by 2015
  • Support of new local restaurants in Philadelphia Restaurant Incubator though "pop-up" test space, staffing, and technical assistance

Source of money: HFFI CDFI-Financial Assistance Program; Fiscal year(s): 2012, 2013