Secret alley, Fitler Square (Instagram/@amtlphilly)

SEPTA and Amtrak to reconnect train stations at 30th Street

30th Street Station is a major hub for travel in the Philadelphia region, but if you try to get there via the city’s most-used transit line, the MFL, the transfer is anything but simple. The above-ground route lacks signage and traverses a busy street that funnels car traffic off of I-76.

That should change in the near future, report BP’s talented high school summer interns, as SEPTA and Amtrak plan to restore a connecting tunnel as a part of a federally funded renovation

Car traffic surrounding 30th Street Station makes crossing above ground difficult, if not dangerous. (Vinella Jill Vinca, Nicholas Pompey, and Essie Haverkamp for Billy Penn)

How bubble gum was invented in Philadelphia

The next time you step in bubble gum, don’t despair. Think to yourself: “I am stuck to one of Philadelphia’s greatest exports.” The story starts with Frank Fleer, who in the 1880s established a candy company that came out with Chiclets gum. But he couldn’t crack the code for a gum that made good bubbles.

The breakthrough would come from a 23-year-old company accountant messing around in his spare time, Avi Wolfman-Arent reports in the latest edition of Headlines of Yore.

Dubble Bubble sold today looks very much like when it was first invented by Philadelphia’s Fleer Corporation. (Concord Trading Co.)

RECAP: What else happened?

$ = paywalled

• The FTA is conducting a formal review after the recent spate of SEPTA bus and trolley crashes. Starting this week, the transit agency is implementing a system-wide safety training that might cause minor travel delays. [Inquirer$/CBS3]

• Working Families Party candidate Jarrett Smith dropped out of the race for city commissioner after a legal challenge found he incorrectly filed a disclosure statement. 1 of 3 seats on the board that runs Philly elections is reserved for a minority party; Republican Seth Bluestein looks assured of reelection. [KYW]

• Philadelphia has started construction to replace 130,000 streetlights with LEDs, which allow remote control of brightness, are energy-efficient, long-lasting, and able to provide instant updates on outages. [West Philly Local/PSIP]

• American Airlines shifted its splashy Doha flight to PHL Airport. The move from NYC marks the airline’s first connection from Philly to the Gulf region. [The Points Guy]

• The 50th anniversary of hip hop was celebrated across Philly this weekend, with graffiti artists, break dancers, MCs, and DJs taking over Eakins Oval, and DMC performing at Cratediggaz Records on South Street. [WHYY x 2]

• Tickets sold out in minutes to watch Philadelphia Union take on global soccer superstar Lionel Messi and his team Inter Miami tomorrow night in Chester. [6ABC/WHYY]

“Lion Crushing a Serpent” by Antoine-Louis Barye in Rittenhouse Square. (Mark Henninger/Imagic Digital)


The School District of Philadelphia is welcoming around 700 new teachers and counselors this upcoming academic year, and Mayor Kenney helps kick off orientation at the School of the Future in Parkside (9 a.m.).


🍹 Billy Penn event: This month’s BP Quizzo trivia night lands at annex. at the Divine Lorraine, in partnership with the North Broad Renaissance. We’ll have happy hour specials and prizes for the winners. Space is limited, so RSVP today. (6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 24) 

🍋 Dock Street Brewing South hosts coastal Indian food purveyor AAJI’s — also women-owned — for a pop-up beer release party for Shikanji Gose, a tart lime ale. (5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 16)

📖 Billy Penn is proud to headline the inaugural Philly Story Fest, joining journalists from media outlets around Philadelphia to tell the city’s best stories on stage at the Bok. Early bird tix are $17. (7 to 10 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5)