Scrapyards have been on my radar since I moved to Philadelphia. They have been a pressing problem in parts of the River Wards planning district, but they’ve also been reported to be an important part of Philadelphia’s micro-economies and an telling index of late industrialism. The City has long been clued into scrapyards as a hazard, a resource, and a small-scale industry that won’t be going anywhere in the near future. (Indeed, in discussions about how to regulate scrapyards, the difficulties of relocation always come up.)
In February 2018, the Philadelphia City Planning Commission report published a report that provides an overview and offers recommendations for how scrapyards could be governed. You can download it here, “Philadelphia Scrapyards and Auto Wrecking: Planning Considerations.”
The above wikimedia image, “Stacked Cars in City Junkyard Will Be Used for Scrap, August 1973,” was taken by Dick Swanson and is part of the U.S. National Archives. The photograph was taken in Philadelphia.