NewsWorks writes that Allyson Schwartz, a Democratic hopeful for governor, is out trying to raise support for a statewide comprehesive transportation bill in Harrisburg. “Republicans have opposed the roughly $2 billion plan and its anticipated effect on motorists through potentially higher gas prices and increased license and registration fees,” the site reports. “Republican leaders have insisted it can only pass among their members if it includes changes to the state’s prevailing wage law to bring down union pay on smaller public works projects.”
I recently met someone who lives in Center City and is debating whether or not she should buy a car. Are you kidding me? Driving in Philadelphia is one of the worst ideas ever. Here, the ten reasons why driving in Philadelphia is a really, really positively and utterly stupid idea.
Fox 29 reports that no injuries resulted from this brawl.
I’ve been riding the West Trenton line to and from work for six years. That’s roughly 3,120 trips, or, as I’ve come to realize, 3,120 chances for me to leave something behind on the train. Miraculously, it wasn’t until my 3,090th trip that I actually did.
CBS Philly reports that state legislators won’t vote on a transportation bill until next month—at the earliest. Members of the Pennsylvania House are taking time to attempt to end up with the same bill as the Senate, rather than pass a different bill and try to resolve the differences. “Given that we were so close on this bill, it made more sense to get together with the senate and try to get one bill,” said Dave Thomas, a key negotiator on the bill.
Rain + view-blocking scaffolding+ a man crossing the street + a SEPTA bus. All this ended in tragedy at 6:20 a.m. at the intersection of 22nd and Chestnut, when said man got trapped under the bus that was making a corner, and later died. There were seven people on board at the time. [NBC 10]
Philly Weekly has an excellent list of “Four Things We Are Going to Miss About SEPTA Tokens.” Topping the list? Complaining about tokens. “You know that ‘I can’t believe we still use these fucking tokens!’ conversation? Dead,” PW writes. “That means all we’ll have left is the Eagles, the government, the taxes, the garbage and the people. And is that really enough?” Please be sure to read the whole thing.
Three weeks ago, SEPTA General Manager Joseph Casey went to Harrisburg and laid out what’s become known as the “doomsday scenario” before the state Senate Transportation Committee.
Last Wednesday, he shared it with a group of transporation industry professionals in Philadelphia by way of reminding them that Pennsylvania woefully underfunds its transportation infrastructure–not just SEPTA, but the state’s roads, bridges and other mass transit systems.
The presentation, which lays out a vision of a dramatically shrunken mass transit system, has led at least one state legislator to criticize SEPTA for, in effect, crying wolf, reminiscent of the agency’s annual pleas for assistance in the early 1990s that became known inside the industry as its “annual going-out-of-business sale.”
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He’s baaaack! Willie Brown, who gained notoriety for the SEPTA strike he orchestrated in 2009, will once again lead Local 324, Philadelphia’s 5,000 member transit workers union. With new contract negotiations on the table again, its members voted Brown back, after ousting him three years ago. For SEPTA, the re-emergence of Brown could be especially problematic. The beleaguered, underfunded agency says that if the state doesn’t pass an adequate transportation funding bill, it’s going to commence a series of brutal cuts next year. Entire regional rail lines will be cut (Cynwyd in ’14, Media-Thorndale in ’15, Chestnut Hill West in ’18) and trolleys will be converted to busses. If Brown plays hardball with SEPTA again this time around, don’t expect him to shed a tear for stranded commuters. “I can’t worry about what the public says,” he told City Paper in 2009. “I have to worry about what my members say. That’s who I have to please.” [Daily News]