Monday, June 09, 2003

  • SCHEDULE CHANGES NEXT WEEK City Transit Division schedules change on Sunday, June 15. Among the major highlights of the summer pickings:

    • ROUTE 8: Service will be reduced from every half hour to every hour between 10:00am and 2:00pm
    • ROUTE 34: A bus-bridge will be deployed between 40 St Portal and 61 St/Baltimore Av due to track renewal. The bus-bridge will continue until August 8.
    • ROUTE 37: Will officially become a bicycle accessible route.

  • More details will be posted when they become available. I would suspect, though, that most routes would see relatively minor changes due to the end of the school year in Philadelphia. Changes on the Red Arrow lines will be delayed until July 6.

  • PARATRANSIT CONTROVERSY IN MONTCO Yet another example of how picky SEPTA has become when it comes to dealing with disabled passengers. An article in this week's Montgomery Newspapers/North Penn Life details the story of Saul Burnstine, 63, of North Wales. Mr. Burnstine suffers from the after effects of an coma-enducing epileptic seizure, which makes walking difficult for him. Due to a quirk in SEPTA's ADA Paratransit borders, the Burnstines live just outside of the SEPTA Paratransit service area, forcing him to walk three blocks to a nearby 7-Eleven. The three block walk takes Mr. Burnstine nearly half an hour. So you'd think that SEPTA would try and accomodate this gentleman considering his health condition, right? Of course not. Now, here's where the quirks come in:

    Burnstine insists she and her husband live in the service area and should get door-to-door service. And although Burnstine said she sees ParaTransit drive down nearby Maple Glenn Drive from her living room window, SEPTA officials still tell her she's out of their reach.

    Making things even more interesting is that the Burnstines reportedly recieved a letter dated May 9th from Fearless Leader herself claiming that their house was not within the paratransit service area. That elicited a response from Montgomery Township officials:

    James Mallon, assistant township manager of Montgomery Township, replied to Moore and SEPTA May 30, writing, "We are
    aware of your present policies, but ask that you reconsider them under these unique circumstances."

    Well, Mr. Mallon, good luck. As much as I'd like to see you succeed in your fight on behalf of the Burnstines, remember that this is SEPTA we're dealing with, not some non-profit human services organization.

    Related article in Lansdale Intelligencer

  • TROLLEY/SCHOOL BUS COLLIDE An inbound 11 trolley collided with a school bus on Thursday near the start of the PM peak, injuring 5 trolley passengers. At 3:30pm, the vehicles struck at 64 St/Woodland Av. There had been no further details posted about the accident.

  • NEW GRETNA UPDATE The Press of Atlantic City reports that NJDOT and Burlington County officials are still trying to formulate a plan to accomodate stranded Route 559 passengers in the New Gretna section of Bass River Township, nearly 6 months after the 559 was diverted off of US 9 due to construction of the Bass River bridge. NJDOT officials are now saying it's up to either Burlington County or Bass River Township to come up with a solution. NJDOT officials had recently promised $25,000 towards shuttle service, however township officials are coming across some snags in their plans.

    (Bass River Township Mayor Rich Bethea) said that possible shuttle service is complicated by several logistics, not limited to personnel, insurance, scheduling and putting a face on exacly who the town's ridership is now.

    Maybe it's just me, but doesn't that seem like another example of NJ Transit's bias against South Jersey?

  • DISHING MORE DIRT ON NJT It appears that the City of Camden isn't the only one that's being used by NJ Transit as a staging area for dumping dirt from other townships and boroughs along the South Jersey Boondoggle Express. According to the Burlington County Times, Assemblyman Jack Conners (D-Pennsauken) is taking exception to dirt being dumped in the Roebling section of Florence Township:

    "I request that your respective departments initiate plans to remove any contaminated soil from Florence and stop using the township as a dumping ground for soil from other communities along the line,'' he wrote (in a letter to NJ Transit).

    It should be pointed out that Conners had been one of the more vocal critics of the entire project.

    Meanwhile, in Camden, Assembly Majority Leader Joseph Roberts (D-Camden) is also taking shots at NJ Transit over dumping of dirt in his East Camden district. According tp the Cherry Hill Courier Post, Roberts has also demanded that dirt be removed from the East Camden site, sending off letters to NJDOT and the state's Department of Enviromental Protection.
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