With construction slated to begin this month on a makeover of Dilworth Plaza, it remains unclear whether Occupy Philly plans to relocate.
The $50-million project, which includes an ice-skating rink and a café, is shaping up as the first point of contention between the city and protesters since the protest began nearly four weeks ago.
"I think there's a tension but we're really committed to working through what's best for this community and being as respectful as we can to all the different needs we're seeing arise through this situation," said Gwen Snyder, executive director of Philadelphia Jobs With Justice and a representative of Occupy's Labor Committee.
But is there a chance that Occupy will refuse to move?
"I think it's possible," Snyder said. "It's a democracy. It's both messy and beautiful. I don't have a solid yes or no answer. I think it will evolve over the next week or so."
For varying reasons, protesters are on both sides of the fence, so to speak. Some are willing to relocate to avoid a head-on clash; others would rather not give in as long as they have a consensus.
Sunday evening, Mayor Nutter and several city officials met with Occupy Philly representatives for more than two hours to discuss public safety, health issues and relocation - possibly to near the Municipal Services Building.
As of Oct. 27, the city had dished out $370,600, mostly in police overtime since the beginning of Occupy Philly, city officials said.
In a letter Monday, Occupy Philly thanked the city for its cooperation and agreed to address several concerns. The letter said that police overtime was not needed and that protesters could police themselves while the city could use the money for education.
Barricades surrounding City Hall were removed Monday. Three sides of the courtyard were open, while the entrance closest to the encampment remained closed off with a police vehicle nearby.
The city needs to remove scaffolding from the tower on the north side of City Hall that was there for earthquake-related repairs, mayoral spokesman Mark McDonald said. Meanwhile, a large window on the 6th floor on the west side must be repaired this week, he said. Repairs are expected to take two to three days.
For safety reasons, tents near those locations would have to be moved or evacuated, McDonald said.