May 23, 2016 |
The homeless outreach teams arrived at Rittenhouse Square just before the morning rush hour. They had come to check in on familiar faces, park regulars who have refused to come inside for years - or even decades. Like Aaron, a paranoid schizophrenic who will soon turn 50, and whose matted dreadlocks have formed into a solid, winding cable of hair. He wanted to be left the hell alone, he said. But the team had come intent on engaging new faces, too. Like the cursing man wearing a heavy coat, a stethoscope, and rubber gloves and carrying a bulky photo album.
April 2, 2016 |
Q: I saw your article about outdoor lighting. Do you do consults? I'm in a three-story condo building in a downtown location, and we want to light the sidewalk along the entrance to our building. It's very dark there at night. - K.W. A: Thank you so much for writing. Unfortunately, for many reasons, I can't personally consult on a project like this. But I can provide some ideas that you can discuss with a local landscape contractor or electrician, as well as your building manager or homeowners' association.
March 17, 2016 |
THE FIRST TIME, she walked around for 45 minutes to work up the nerve to do it. As someone who shuns the spotlight, approaching a homeless person with an offer of food, a handout, was outside her comfort zone. "I thought people would be resentful," Sharon Suleta says. The first time was nine weeks ago this very night, in the Suburban Station underground concourse. Dragging a food-filled luggage cart behind her, with a socks-stuffed canvas bag over her arm, she approached those who appeared to be homeless and asked, "Would you like a dinner bag?"
March 10, 2016
Random stabbings by a 55-year-old unidentified man in Southwest Philadelphia on Tuesday left one man dead and two hospitalized, police said. The first victim, a 31-year-old man was paying his bill at a Cricket Wireless store in the 5500 Block of Baltimore Avenue when the assailant walked in and, unprovoked, stabbed him in the chest, said Lt. John Walker of Southwest Detectives. The second victim, a 51-year-old man, was sitting in his car outside the store when the assailant climbed into the passenger side of the car. The man suffered stab wounds in both hands as he struggled with the assailant, Walker said.
September 11, 2015
I TOOK A WALK in the sun a few days back with the Dynamic Duo, looking for sidewalk hazards. The Dynamic Duo are Debby Schaaf and Pamela Freyd, unpaid volunteer co-chairwomen of the 4-year-old Feet First Philly, which is sponsored by the Clean Air Council. Feet First Philly promotes the novel idea that sidewalks belong to the people who walk them. Crazy, isn't it? Feet First has done surveys (you can volunteer or chime in at www.feetfirstphilly.org ) of sidewalk obstacles.
July 11, 2015 |
Jim Kenney's famous temper was on full view the day we strolled around Center City, looking at construction sites. More specifically, we were looking at construction sites where the sidewalks had been blocked. There aren't many things that make the Democratic mayoral candidate madder than having to cross the street because of a sidewalk closure - except when contractors treat the cordoned-off space as free parking. "Tell me why that's necessary," Kenney sputtered as we reached the corner of 15th and Chestnut, where the 51-story W Hotel is going up. His face reddened, his eyes flashed.
March 28, 2015 |
By summertime, even the streets of the Gayborhood will be covered in rainbows. The crosswalks on 12th and Locust and 13th and Locust will be permanently painted over with rainbows, thanks to a partnership between the LGBT organization Philly Pride Presents and the city. While the final date for the installation hasn't been set, the sidewalks will be dedicated July 5, according to the organization's Facebook post. Philly Pride Presents executive director Franny Price said there were a few issues left to iron out with the city's Streets Department, but said the rainbow sidewalks were absolutely going forward.
June 29, 2014 |
Southeastern Pennsylvania's recreational trail network - already the envy of many other metro areas - is getting a $7.5 million infusion through a federal program aimed at providing alternatives to vehicle-based transportation. The money will fund 11 projects in all five counties, closing a gap in a Central Bucks trail, building a multiuse trail in Lansdale, putting sidewalks in Swarthmore, and adding $1.25 million to the city's bike share program, launching next spring. Completion may be several years off, but ultimately, "what this will do is help get people out of their cars and onto sidewalks and multiuse trails," said Joseph Banks, a project implementation coordinator at the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission.
June 21, 2014 |
More than a month later, the horror of Zachary Woods' death still sends a chill down a pedestrian's spine. The 27-year-old Wharton student was walking along Walnut Street toward the Penn campus on a bright Tuesday morning when an out-of-control motorist slammed into another car at the 30th Street intersection. Spinning like a top, the car jumped the sidewalk on the south side and sent Woods plunging over the railing into Penn Park, 38 feet below. While news reports called it a "freak accident," you can't help wondering if it was entirely unpredictable.
December 26, 2013 |
Jason R. Nathan, 84, a government official who oversaw the construction of public housing projects throughout the Northeastern United States during the 1960s, but also went out of his way to fund Society Hill's colonial-style lamp posts and brick sidewalks, died Tuesday, Dec. 17, of heart failure at a Haverford nursing home. Mr. Nathan, who spent most of his adult life in Philadelphia, was running the mid-Atlantic office of the Department of Housing and Urban Development during the period when cities across the country were clear-cutting old neighborhoods and replacing them with cookie-cutter housing towers.