I-95 to reopen to traffic this weekend

Looks like Gov. Shapiro has gotten the world’s biggest pothole filled in record time. Traffic will be flowing again on I-95 this weekend, he announced yesterday, just two weeks since the truck explosion took out the overpass and disrupted travel for tens of thousands of commuters and literal tons of interstate commerce.

“This is what it looks like when the ingenuity of Delco meets the grit of Philly,” Shapiro said, coining a term immediately adopted into the local lexicon. 

Crews add a layer of “modified sub-base” to the segment that will temporarily reconnect I-95 at Cottman Avenue, preparing the connector for paving. (PennDOT livestream)

Philly Starbucks vary on Pride Month displays

Starbucks is at the center of a national controversy over Pride Month displays. A National Labor Relations Board complaint says various locations are banning LGBTQ-affirming materials around the cafes. Is that happening in the Philly region? Some stores proudly fly rainbow flags, Jordan Levy and Emily Rizzo report — but at others the situation is less clear.

A giant Pride flag flies atop the Starbucks headquarters in 2014 during Gay Pride Week in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

RECAP: What else happened?

$ = paywalled

• Pennsylvania is one step closer to increasing its minimum wage to $15 by 2026, with the House sending legislation to the Senate for consideration. The current minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. [WHYY]

• The Philly connection to the missing Titanic tourism submersible: One of the occupants has a degree from Philadelphia University. [6ABC]

• Juneteenth will become part of Philly’s official K-12 curriculum next year if the School Board votes on June 29 to approve the resolution adding it. [PhillyVoice/Phila SD]

• Three dozen Philly high school art students have work on display at City Hall this summer, thanks to a program out of Temple’s Tyler School of Art. [Temple]

• Combine street smarts with art exploration with the “South Philly Mural Escape,” a new group puzzle adventure that’s part escape room and part self-guided tour. [South Philly Review]

• The Phillies gave up the first game of this home series against the Braves, but they’re still in a good spot — and have memories of last year’s NLDS win to keep them fired up. [Billy Penn]

Jefferson Plaza at East Market, opening up the corner of 12th and Chestnut to the public. (Heather Chin/Billy Penn)

Weekly brief on gun violence prevention (with PCGVR)

We publish this report each week in partnership with the Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting

• City Council didn’t pass the budget last week, but it’s poised to happen on Thursday, and the 2024 spending plan tries to address public safety with extra funding for neighborhood cleanups, mental health services, and other initiatives. [WHYY]

• Are Philly’s anti-violence community grants going to organizations that are making good use of them? And is there really any way to tell? Here’s a look at the debate over the program’s effectiveness. [Trace]

• The new healing garden at Philadelphia nonprofit LevelUp is helping young people who are directly impacted by gun violence. [6ABC/Level Up]

• Read a remembrance of Tahmir “SBM” Hightower, an 18-year-old emerging rapper who was about to have a daughter when he was lost to gun violence. [Philly Obit Project]

By the numbers in Philadelphia

  • 49: Shooting victims recorded last week, vs. 35 the week prior. [City Controller via @PCGVR]
  • 858: Shooting victims this year so far, down 21% vs. this time last year. [PCGVR]
  • 199: Year-to-date homicides, down 18% vs. last year’s pace; up 41% vs. five years ago [Philly Police]


Mayor Kenney heads to a groundbreaking at Murphy Rec Center in Whitman, South Philly, joining officials who run the city’s Rebuild project and folks from Live Casino and Hotel, which donated $750k to fund the renovations (3:30 p.m.).


🎨 Fourth Friday returns for its first summer installment of the year along the avenue in the Germantown Arts District. Meet local artists, musicians, dancers, and food trucks every fourth Friday of the month. (Friday, June 23) 

📚 A celebration of queer middle grade and teen books comes to the Free Library at this year’s Youth Queer Lit Fest. Readers aged 10-19 and their parents/caregivers will be greeted with booktalks, giveaways, and more fun. Free with RSVP. (1 p.m. Saturday, June 24)