Newsletter for Wednesday, June 17
INSTAGRAM OF THE DAY
An almost-rainbow at the Betsy Ross Bridge during sunset yesterday; photo via @gratefultographer on Instagram.
THE POPE IS COMING, AND MASS TRANSIT WILL BE A MESS
In just about 100 days, an estimated two million people will descend on our city to get a glimpse of one of the most popular Popes in recent memory. Break out the walking shoes or the bike. During the first of what officials promise is many planning updates for the September Papal visit, Mayor Michael Nutter said Tuesday that Philadelphia residents should plan to walk miles to get to locations throughout the city because public transportation will be heavily backed up and driving will be nearly impossible. Here’s what to expect from SEPTA, NJ Transit, PATCO and Amtrak during the busy weekend.
POLICE: ROMANIAN PAIR SKIMMED CENTER CITY ATM
If you had to call your bank after using an ATM in the 1800 block of JFK Boulevard, here’s why: Police have charged Aura Voicu, 24, and Siviu Serban, 30, with installing a skimming device on the ATM there. The pair were in the country on an expired tourist visa, and were caught on security camera placing tape over the automatic teller machine’s camera. If you used the ATM from May 3-6, the Major Crimes Unit wants to talk to you; Philly.com has details on how to reach them.
PHILLY REP. MARK COHEN ON WHY THE CITY NEEDS A STATE UNIVERSITY
Mark Cohen, 66, is the senior member of Pennsylvania’s legislature. He’s served the 202nd House District (Northeast Philly) since 1974. In that time, Cohen has largely been synonymous with progressive initiatives. He supported gay marriage and the legalization of weed earlier than most. He’s continuously supported measures that assist veterans. He helped create legislation that led to wheelchair accessible cabs in Philadelphia. And Cohen keeps winning, albeit barely. Last spring, he defeated Democratic primary challenger Jared Solomon with just under 52 percent of the vote. Cohen spoke with Billy Penn about changes needed for Philadelphia, the boys club of 1970s Harrisburg and his future.
TO DO: EAT DESSERT FIRST
WHAT: Sample desserts from some of the area’s top pastry chefs as the Emerging Leaders of People’s Emergency Center raise money for women and children in shelters.
WHERE: The Pyramid Club, 1735 Market St. 19103
HOW MUCH: $40
BILLY PENN LIKES
JAILBREAK: 6 INMATES ESCAPED FROM PHILLY PRISONS IN 6 YEARS
Two murderers who escaped from a prison in upstate New York are still on the loose. Last week, a Philadelphia cab driver reported to police that he might have picked them up around Vine and then took them to 30th Street. That wasn’t the case, according to police. They were probably never here. But the city has witnessed escaped prisoners. In the last several years, there have been three high-profile cases.
WHAT THE READING VIADUCT PARK WILL LOOK LIKE
The rail line that’s one of the highlights of the Callowhill area of the city — or “Eraserhood,” thanks to the David Lynch movie — curves from Callowhill Street to the intersection of Broad and Noble streets, just across from the old Inquirer / Daily News building and steps away from the School District’s headquarters. The area will be turned into the Reading Viaduct Spur, a raised rail park that recently received final approval from the Philadelphia Art Commission based on its Phase I plans, according to Plan Philly. And here’s how that’s going to look in a few years.