Pennypack Park could Go Ape

The focus of last night’s Fox Chase Homeowners Association/Town Watch meeting was Go Ape!, and adventure course looking to take root in Pennypack Park.

The UK-based Go Ape! first introduced itself to the Northeast at last month’s Friends of Pennypack Park meeting, where members hotly contested the idea of using the park as an adventure destination.

Though no formal application has been submitted to the Zoning Board, Go Ape! is eying a spot near Pine and Bloomfield roads to set up its course, which includes ropes, bridges and zip lining through the tree tops of Pennypack. The location has been nailed down, since choosing the right spot would mean sending Go Ape! workers into the trees to determine if they can support the course, Homeowners Association President Matt Braden said.

While Go Ape! has promised to plant three trees for every one cut down to set up the course, most residents were concerned with the congestion the course could bring. Go Ape!’s programs are designed for groups, and park-lovers and nearby homeowners expressed fears of high volumes of people and cars in the area.

The plan is still preliminary, but it could take a lot of work for Go Ape! to convince the nearby neighborhood organizations that its programs are a good thing.

“It’s a cool idea,” Braden said. “But this may not necessarily be the right place for it.”

Also at last night’s meeting:

  • 7th District Community Relations Officer Rich Simon shared details from the recent crime reports in Zone 1 (Rhawn Street to Bloomfield Road, Roosevelt Boulevard to the city line). Thefts from unlocked vehicles are still a problem, he said, and there were three burglaries since the last Fox Chase meeting on the 8200-block of Bridle Road, the 2000-block of Arthur Street and the 2300-block of Rhawn Street. Simon warned: “Be careful, be vigilant, don’t be afraid to call us.”
  • Board elections are coming up, and there are vacant seats for the vice president, secretary and treasurer of the Homeowners Association.

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