Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Building Bridges in Delaware County, Except for Media, PA

Results matter and so does effective leadership.  Here's a story of a similar situation in Delaware county where communities have been faced with repairing a bridge.  Similar cost, similar funding, similar need, but much different outcomes between Media/UP and Folcroft/Glenolden.  Not because of money, but because Media Borough Council is influenced by five self appointed people who shamelessly used the leverage of a county park to advance there own personal agendas.

Folcroft and Glenolden of Delaware County, PA are proudly celebrating the completion of a new bridge that was done 3 months ahead of schedule, while we here in Media incurred a million dollar increase in the cost to fix our bridge at taxpayer expense and are no closer to getting it done then we were 17 years ago!

A bridge opening in Delaware County, but after 17 years, not one in Media, PA
The Grant Avenue Bridge was re-opened with a dedication by Delaware County Council Friday morning, bridging a gap between Folcroft and Glenolden boroughs since April.

Spanning the Muckinipattis Creek, the $2.6 million bridge replaces the original that was constructed in 1928 complete with a new pedestrian walkway, wider travel lanes and updated drainage facilities.

Construction of the bridge finished three months earlier than expected.

Police and fire crews were the first to cross the bridge in a symbolic connection of the municipalities.

Funds to demolish and re-build the bridge were provided from federal and state funds, providing 80 and 15 percent to the project respectively. The final five percent came from the county’s liquid tax fund.
Delaware County Facebook Page 
I particularly like the reference: "Police and fire crews were the first to cross the bridge in a symbolic connection of the municipalities."  Our Police and Fire crews weren't even given the important opportunity to speak on such a matter. In fact, Media's council lashed out and vilified adjacent municipalities for involvement in the 3rd St. bridge!

Here's what ineffective leadership and political games brought Media, PA:
  • In Media, our Fire and Police departments were prevented by our Borough Council from formally speaking on the matter.
  • Our RTM school district who supports a two way bridge, received a call from a member of borough council angrily protesting the school boards involvement. WHY?
  • Three councilmen signed a petition for a greenway from a group that HIJACKED a community park and used it for nothing more than their own special interests.  How can one group speak on behalf of a county park, when everyone has equal right and opinion regarding it? Debbie Krull, Co-Chair of the local party even campaigned for their cause. 
  • Borough Council was found to have stacked the committee to support a special interest agenda.  The Co-Chair of the CAC committee resigned and wrote a letter formally explaining such.  Borough Council never revealed the important reason of the letter to the public.
  • Councilman Kent Davidson who lives 20 yrds from the proposed project, is not only accused of conflict of interest, but was found to be providing a undisclosed website through a company that he owns that supported his own political agenda and that of a the special interest group whose petition he signed. A $3.4 million dollar project and Media has this nonsense?
  • Borough Council was served with a "Contempt of Court" petition for breaking existing agreement with Delaware County and BLCC.  After 45 days of the ruling, they've done noting to remediate the issue with stake holders.  It goes back to court mid-February 2013.
  • Borough Council told us that the PennDot funding for this project was secure, when PennDot didn't even know this was back in court due to the petition brought against Borough Council.
  • Borough Council used a misleading "Push" survey that didn't include costs associated with bridge designs or the context of consequence. A two-way bridge, was compared to a breached dam, that was compared to a greenway, etc.  Trouble is, the "two way bridge" wasn't disclosed as being funded for, while misleading people to think the other options were, they weren't, and possibly more expensive.  No one was made aware of that who took the survey.   It also didn't discuss a legal binding lawsuit that stipulated a two way bridge.  With that logic, a Ferrari would cost as much as a Hyundia and you would never get a speeding ticket!
  • Lack of leadership over the last 17 years has driven the cost up by $1 million dollars to repair bridge.  It could have been repaired for $1.5 million, as opposed to the current cost of $3.4 million.....and counting.
  • Mayor Bob McMahon tells people on the street his desire for a two way road, but fails to state the position at Borough Council meetings.  When purportedly asked why he didn't speak up, he states he wasn't asked. In the last three months, he has since changed his mind and supports a one-way option, after 16 years of supporting the previous setup, two-way.
  • At a council meeting, one councilman angrily lashed out at the BLCC, RTM School District, Middletown Township and Upper Providence for essentially "Meddling in Media" affairs.  Shockingly, they now have the audacity to seek needed funding from Upper Providence for a new library.
Democrat, Republican, Independent; we all deserve better local, cooperative government that is HELD ACCOUNTABLE!  and represents EVERYONE FAIRLY  


  1. Well said and a nice summary of what has been going on.

    1. This is a completely unbiased report.

    2. Unbiased? I hope you are being sarcastic because this report is totally biased.

  2. I haven't read anything to the contrary.

  3. Tedman,

    You are the only real blog and blogger conentrating on Media Borough. Thank you for all the updates and keeping us all informed. I want you to run for Borough Council and this time you will win. My friends not even living in Media are reading allthingsmedia just to learn about the new businesses.

  4. The difference is that Third Street sits on top of a high hazard dam, creating a private, shrinking and unused lake, and is now sucessfully established as a pedestrian safe entrance to Delaware County's oldest public park.

    Taxpayers should have built an inexpensive bridge (not dam)17 years ago. Who is opposed to that idea?

    1. Yeah --- makes total sense ....."as a pedestrian safe entrance"... on top of a "High hazard dam" make no sense. You can not eat your cake and have it too.

    2. It is high hazard due to its location and will require 50 to 100 years of county taxpayer maintenance. Trees and bushes will not be allowed to return to that end of the park, it will look similar to a highway culvert. And taxpayers will be faced with this decision again, long after the swim club and what remains of their undredged lake are gone .....

    3. Wrong it is classified as "High Hazard" because of its length not location & when they rebuild the dam it will still be classified as "High Hazard" stop pretending you know what is going on

  5. Tedman has his point of view. So he biased. But the great thing about his blog, he let's you be biased for your point of view. It is called the First Amendment.

  6. The word that makes my skin crawl is "comprise" No where in the signed stipulation were the 3 parties to come to a "comprise" It said "restore" the road. If anyone is curious what "restore" means - look it up in Webster's dictionary. Here I'll save you the time: to bring back to or put back into a former or original state

    1. Cindy, the agreement does not say "restore".

    2. The agreement says "reestablish" defined by Webster's as to return to what once was. That would be two ways two lanes

    3. @ Anonymous Jan 18 2013 1:35pm Thank you for correcting my error. I could not have said it better myself and apologize profusely for the wrong wording.

    4. Fortunately, the agreement also specifies out what the bridge should be returned to, exactly.

      Media Borough agreed to "make such improvements as is necessary to reestablish the West Third Street roadway across the dam as an open thoroughfare for vehicular and pedestrian traffic"

      The one-way option would return the roadway to an open thoroughfare - just like the agreement demands.

      By way of an analogy, suppose Republicans want to reestablish control of the Senate. Does than mean they have to restore to office the exact same 55 senators they had in 2006? Or would a simple 51-seat majority be enough to reestablish control?

    5. Nice try with word play. The stipulation is based on the 1996 Schnabel report to return Third St as an open thoroughfare. Report says two lanes two way.
      Try to twist more words in your favor.

    6. Not just a nice try, Anon @3:25PM, more like game, set and match.

      Actually, the stipulation is to the 1996 Schnablel report "or any amendments thereto".

      There's nothing that precludes an amendment showing a one-way.

  7. To all "So sorry I misspelled COMPROMISE" Somehow it doesn't change how I/we feel

  8. Interesting, part of the word COMPROMISE is PROMISE!

  9. Drain the lake and build townhouses. It has the zoning. Every other parcel of land is being developed. Tired of all the squabling and name calling. Use the building permit fees and RE taxes to fund the library new construction.