SEPTA gets Burholme’s approval for Ryers improvements

If all goes according to plan, Ryers Train Station will have a whole new look come Spring 2012. Representatives from SEPTA attended last night’s meeting of the Burholme Civic Association and Town Watch seeking a zoning variance for signs that will accompany the renovated station.

Described as a project “worked on by SEPTA and the community,” the proposed plans include new platforms, and expanded parking lot and smaller amenities like a canopy, benches and heated wind screens. Problems with the bridge over Cottman Avenue will also be addressed, as many residents at last night’s meeting pointed out the concrete has started to fall apart.

Emergency Preparedness

Edward Vassallo from the city’s Office of Emergency Management gave the following advice to those who want to be prepared for a disaster:

Learn to text. During a mass emergency, it’s often easier to text than trying to make a phone call.

Have a contact. A contact in a different area code is best, as it’s easier to call out during an emergency.

Make a plan. Aside from an escape and evacuation plan, be prepared for a shelter-in-place emergency as well.

For more tips, click here.

Construction is set to being in September, and is expected to take 18 months to complete. The existing station will continue to function in the meantime, and SEPTA spokeswoman Eileen Quigley assured neighbors that traffic patterns would not be affected during construction, though commuters will have to park in the nearby Pathmark parking lot during the process.

Burholme residents asked several questions, but were most concerned about the spelling of the station’s name. Several people requested the station be spelled “Ryerss,” so that it be appropriately named for the Ryerss family who helped choose the original location for the station. It was decided that Civic Association President Al Taubenberger will put in a request to the city to have the name spelled correctly.

A motion to accept this plan — and the signage that goes along with any train station — was unanimously approved.

In the video below, SEPTA’s Eileen Quigley explains the need for a zoning variance in order to proceed with plans for Ryers.

Also at last night’s meeting…Presentation BVM Principal Nancy Scharnikow presented information on the Cheltenham-based school, which includes 300 PreK-8 students, smartboards and a state-of-the-art science lab…2nd District Community Relations Officer Mark Mroz announced the date for the annual Community Day. The event will be held June 5 at the Target on Bustleton Avenue, and will feature VIN registration, child IDs and more.

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