Beginning at 9 a.m., the stream of vehicles will roll from Allegheny Avenue and Emerald Street, where a van from the city Managing Director's Office has been fielding citizen complaints in a long-underserved part of Kensington, to a new ``command post'' at F Street and Indiana Avenue, adjacent to McPherson Square.
The square, known to locals as ``Needle Park,'' is frequently the scene of drug use, dope sales and prostitution, said Philadelphia Police Inspector Jeremiah Daley, the Operation Sunrise project director.
``It's like planting a flag in the middle of a troublesome location,'' Daley said of the move to F and Indiana.
A town meeting of city officials and community residents is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Stetson Middle School, B Street and Allegheny Avenue.
A tenet of the overall operation is for police and other officials to enlist residents and local organizations in the battle on crime.
Operation Sunrise is targeting a 2.4-square-mile area stretching from Tioga Street south to York Street and from Trenton Avenue west to Germantown Avenue.
The area has 70,000 residents - about 5 percent of Philadelphia's population - among them, Pennsylvania's largest enclave of Latino residents (about 28,000 people).
The poverty rate is more than twice the city average. Last year's homicide rate was nearly four times the city average. The 68 killings represented 17 percent of the city's 409 homicides.
Police decided to tackle the area in four stages, starting with the area judged easiest to clean up, and moving progressively into rougher parts.
Though not problem-free, the Phase I area, the section east of Kensington Avenue, has been ``stabilized,'' Daley said.
The Phase II area is roughly a triangle between B Street, Tioga Street and Kensington Avenue.