January 22, 2012 |
JAKARTA, Indonesia - Indonesia has gone to imaginative extremes to try to stop commuters from illegally riding the roofs of trains - hosing down the scofflaws with red paint, threatening them with dogs, and appealing for help from religious leaders. Now the authorities have an intimidating and possibly even deadly new tactic: suspending rows of grapefruit-size concrete balls to rake over the top of trains as they pull out of stations, or when they go through rail crossings. Authorities hope the balls - which could deliver serious blows to the head - will be enough to deter defiant roof riders.
December 29, 2011
PHILADELPHIA Tasco DROPs the bomb City Councilwoman Marian Tasco will retire tomorrow, collect a $478,057 pension payment, then return to work Monday after she is sworn in to serve her seventh term. Francis Bielli, executive director of the city's Board of Pensions and Retirement, said that he was recently notified of when Tasco, who is enrolled in the controversial Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP), would retire. Tasco did not respond to requests for comment.
December 25, 2011
Murray Dubin is coauthor, with Daniel R. Biddle, of Tasting Freedom: Octavius Catto and the Battle for Equality in Civil War America As a calendar year ebbs, we find ourselves looking back and trying to take a measure of its flow. What kind of year was it? Who died? Was a job lost or gained? Health problems? The kids? Fall in love? In the end, was 2011 a good year or not? Often that is an easy question (Vince Fumo had a bad year, for instance), but it can be complicated, a balancing act between what life gave you and what was taken away.
December 10, 2011 |
About 50 people gathered for a brief Occupy Philadelphia demonstration at 30th Street Station on Friday that was followed by a guest appearance at a labor rally. Shortly before 6 p.m., the movement's familiar call to attention - "mic check!" - was shouted inside the station as the participants congregated near the main train-schedule board. For several minutes, they chanted that their "fight for fairness will never die" while Amtrak police tried to figure out what was going on. The only negative reaction they received came from a man in the taxi queue as the demonstrators left the station.
December 6, 2011 |
FREEHOLD, N.J. - Things had not been going Arthur Morgan 3d's way recently. He had been quarrelling with his girlfriend over their 2-year-old daughter, with each taking the other to court. He had not seen little Tierra Morgan-Glover in a month, and he had gotten fired from his job at a lumberyard a week earlier. On Nov. 21, Morgan made arrangements with the girl's mother, Imani Benton, to take his daughter to see a movie about dancing penguins. When they failed to return after a few hours, Benton called police.
October 2, 2011 |
The business community in the tiny Chester County town of Malvern is looking forward to better times. If an economic recovery kicks in, that would be welcome, too. But for now, what will constitute better times for the stores and restaurants that line King Street, the borough's main commerce corridor, is when a construction project in the heart of town since February 2010 finally comes to an end, possibly by Nov. 1. The goal of the $9.9...
July 27, 2011 |
A former squash coach at the private Shipley School in Bryn Mawr is facing a preliminary hearing Thursday on charges that he had a sexual relationship with an underage female student. James Civello, 50, of the first block of Rock Ridge Road, Upper Black Eddy, had numerous sexual encounters with the 16-year-old, starting on April 7 at the Bryn Mawr Guest Suites on Morton Road, according to Lower Merion Township police. Later, Civello had sex with the girl at the Haverford Train Station and "four to five times" at the student's home in Lower Merion Township, according to an affidavit of probable cause.
July 17, 2011 |
Amtrak is getting ready to create a master plan for 30th Street Station, hoping to make the neoclassical landmark a more welcoming gateway to both West Philadelphia and Center City. The 78-year-old train station serves more than seven million Amtrak, SEPTA, and NJ Transit passengers a year, but it's isolated by a river, two expressways, a cordon of busy streets, and a wasteland of parking lots. For pedestrians, the area around the station is "about as inhospitable as the surface of another planet," said Bob Francis, vice president for university facilities at Drexel University.
June 25, 2011 |
Can we all agree that nothing is sacred anymore? I noticed with some dismay this week that Nick Lachey, the host of NBC's other singing competition, The Sing-Off , has sold the rights to his wedding to Vanessa Minnillo as a made-for-TV special. To auction off this momentous occasion to the highest bidder, to turn this most intimate of ceremonies into a public spectacle - that's just shabby. To make matters worse, Lachey is a repeat offender. He packaged his prior marriage to singer Jessica Simpson as an MTV series, Newlyweds . After my outrage simmered down, I found I had a change of heart.
April 29, 2011
Best to leave your car at home (or the train station) if you're heading to the PIFA Street Fair tomorrow. Regional rail lines will run on a regular Saturday schedule, though extra cars will be added to some lines. Some SEPTA bus routes will detour around the six-block fairgrounds along Broad Street. Affected routes will be those that regularly run down Broad Street between Chestnut and Lombard streets, or perpendicular to Broad Street between the closed-off intersections. Those detours will begin as early as 1 p.m. today (Broad between Locust and Pine)