bishop tube in malvern up for huge residential development – discussion at east whiteland meeting july 22nd

Abandoned Bishop Tube in Frazer PA as found on Abandoned But Not Forgotten Website

Abandoned Bishop Tube in Frazer PA as found on Abandoned But Not Forgotten Website

My late father always told me that I should check the Saturday papers for news that is meant to escape most and that if someone wants to slip important things past a populous, do it in the dead of summer.

Maybe it is just a coincidence, but one of the most notorious toxic waste sites around is being discussed in East Whiteland Township tomorrow, July 22nd – Bishop Tube on Malin Road in Frazer:

 PLANNING COMMISSION
EAST WHITELAND TOWNSHIP
REVISED MEETING AGENDA
July 22, 2015
Workshop – 7:00 p.m.
Public Meeting – 7:30 p.m.

4.  Malin Road Development – former Bishop Tube Site – Sketch Plan
S. Malin Rd & Route 30 – RRD – Residential Revitalization
District – to permit 264 townhouses

The abandoned Bishop Tube Company of Malin Road in Frazer (East Whiteland) as featured on Abandoned but Not Forgotten website

The abandoned Bishop Tube Company of Malin Road in Frazer (East Whiteland) as featured on Abandoned but Not Forgotten website

Ok yes, it is abandoned. I assume these buildings are still there? I have never gone back there. But I remember reading about this site dating back to the 1980s and 1990s.

As a matter of fact and more than a little alarming is the fact that a law suit was filed this past April as in 2015 about Bishop Tube. And it has been closed, empty, abandoned for YEARS now, right?

Of course this never made the news around here did it? Or was it some little tiny mention that evaporated?

Homeowners allege leeching of hazardous chemicals into aquifer under home

Bradley and Paula Gay Warren filed a lawsuit filed April 19 in U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania against: Johnson Matthey Inc.; Bishop Tire Co.; Whittaker Corp.; Christiana Metals Corp.; Central and Western Chester County Industrial Development Authority; Electralloy Corp.; Marcegaglia SPA; Marcegaglia USA Inc.; and Constitution Drive Partners.   According to the lawsuit ….the defendants used and disposed the environment of hazardous chemicals, including trichloroethylene, during the manufacturing of seamless stainless steel and other products.

“As a result of the defendants’ ownership and operations at the Bishop Tube site,” the lawsuit states, “hazardous substances, including TCE, were disposed into the environment, including the Bishop Tube site’s soils and groundwater. Subsurface migration of contaminated groundwater from the Bishop Tube site has and continues to contaminate the aquifer beneath the Bishop Tube site and beneath off-site premises including the plaintiffs’ home.”

In 1980, the lawsuit states, the Bishop Tube site was included in a liability information list by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Warrens seek the court’s assistance in making Bishop Tube’s subsequent owners “prevent any further endangerment and also all costs, including attorney and expert witness fees.”

The case is real and active – click on Bishop Tube et al 2015 litigation

Ok so can they go forward with land development discussions while litigation like this is pending? And read what the article is saying.

Bishop Tube was something I was aware of before I lived out here. They were marked by the EPA in 1980 , and was mentioned in an article in 1992 in the Philadelphia Inquirer when President George Bush (as in the father) was in the area touring tube plants.

Then in 2007 there was an article in The Daily Local

Bishop Tube facility started in 1951, now abandoned

Katz seeks to build sports center in Chester County

Posted: March 21, 2001

Using public and private financing, a development company owned by Sam Katz, the former Philadelphia mayoral candidate, wants to build a $17 million sports center on a contaminated industrial site along Route 30 in Chester County.

The center, with ice-skating rinks, indoor soccer fields and a wellness center, would be on the former Bishop Tube manufacturing site in Frazer, in East Whiteland Township.

Abandoned two years ago, the 17-acre property – a brownfield, or environmentally contaminated site – is near the Route 202 high-tech corridor….

Katz would set up a nonprofit, tax-exempt entity that would qualify for public money, including low-interest loans or bonds and grants, to clean up the site and build the facility……This is the first brownfield site Katz has proposed developing.

The land would remain in the hands of the Central and Western Chester County Industrial Development Authority (IDA), an affiliate of the Chester County Development Council, a private, nonprofit organization………

East Whiteland is the only township in Chester County with a building moratorium. The 18-month moratorium is set to expire in February 2002. Township officials declined to comment on the Katz project, saying that they had not heard about it nor seen the proposal.

East Whiteland experienced its peak growth in the 1950s. In the last 10 years, census figures show, the population has grown 11 percent, from 8,398 to 9,333.

If the sports facility were built, it probably would draw from an area much wider than the township…..

Robins said planners envisioned a state-of-the art building, designed with “green technology,” incorporating recycled materials, passive heating and other techniques that would “have a minimum impact on the environment.”

“What we like is, one, here’s a site that for the most part, is a scar on the environment. By making it a green building, not only do we correct that imbalance, but we also take it to the positive side. The building starts to give back,” Robins said.

is having an opinion social crucifixion?

 

“Be wary because they also say what goes around comes around.”

That is but one of the public comments my blog received yesterday. Other comments included non publicly created gems like “eventually, we’ll get you.”

Remarkably, these were comments from women. Ladies, if you will.

Why?

For having an opinion that differed from the pack and for asking questions.

Sometimes as a blogger, I feel it’s just me that this is happening to me alone and then I hear it from other people.  Just yesterday as a matter fact someone I know was a guest on a nationwide talk show  where one of the hosts remarked  to my friend off stage as they were getting ready something along the lines of some days they didn’t know what they were going to talk about because no matter what they spoke about people were always unhappy, telling them they can’t have an opinion, saying they were horrible, and even issuing threats.

As a blogger and writer, I am not particularly controversial.  As a person I am not particularly controversial or extreme. But I do have opinions that will occasionally differ from the pack and I will ask questions about things that I find curious or which concern me.

And if someone takes issue with an opinion and if I comment back often I get this : “Oh, only you’re allowed to have an opinion?”. No, that is not what I said. It is as if I am supposed to take the keyboard lashings without further comment. Well truthfully sometimes I do, because it’s not worth arguing with someone who only cares about expressing their opinion, not in discussing something where opinions are opposing.

But yesterday I actually took the time to explain my position to a  keyboard critic.  I shouldn’t have bothered. She really wasn’t interested in a reasonable conversation, she was merely a self-appointed judge, jury, and executioner. Ok fine, she expressed her opinion. I have no problem with that. But I did have a problem with her dismissiveness of my taking the time to explain something to her which seemed important to her, followed by a thinly veiled social threat. 

… I am simply stating my OPINION which apparently is reserved only for you and not others!  I absolutely don’t have time to go back and forth with this nonsense!  It seems that your OPINION is the only OPINION that counts and I most definitely don’t have the desire to go around and around with you about this any longer… it’s like they say the definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again, expecting different results!  That My Dear is not in my wheelhouse so I’m out!  Good luck and be well, but be wary because they also say what goes around, comes around!

Ok eyes rolling? Really? This is what makes them a good person and me bad? 

Take away lesson here is supposed to be I am OK if I am a subservient bobblehead , not if I am expressing an opinion they don’t agree with? And they can talk at me, but we can’t have a conversation about it? And I’m not supposed to respond?

Sad.

I love living in Chester County, but what I’m discovering is there are people of similar vein everywhere: urban, suburban, and country. They  also come from all socioeconomic levels across the board. These are the people that are only comfortable when the opinions are uniform and almost of a single mind as if we are a bunch of Stepford wives. 

I don’t live like that. I have a brain and was raised to use it not hide it.  This nonsense is often all too reminiscent of the middle school and high school lunchroom and the antics we all remember and not always all too fondly.

A few years ago I read this great piece about blogging and having opinions:

Don’t Be Afraid To Have Opinions Or Take Sides

By Adam Singer Future Buzz

What makes blogs special to you?  To me, it is the unique viewpoints of individuals who express their thoughts uninterrupted by editors or restrictions other than the self-imposed variety.

I frequently inject opinion here and take sides.  That’s not really a secret and should be pretty clear if you’ve been reading for awhile.  I would like to think you’re here not necessarily because your agree or disagree with what I write, but that you think it is worth hearing and want to learn, interact and debate with me.

If you agree with everything all bloggers you read are saying, you’re not reading enough blogs.  I don’t think there is any blogger I read who I agree with all their thoughts.  Perhaps most interesting of all are posts I disagree with, as those are the kind that I’ll think deeper about, add my opinion on and back up why I disagree.

If you’re a blogger, don’t ever be afraid to have opinions or take sides, you’ll only succeed in getting in the way of what could potentially be great content.  Don’t second guess yourself….If we want bland content lacking heart, we’re not looking to blogs – it’s that simple.  We want to read sites that touch our emotions.  An easy way to do this is to write something you have a strong opinion on, one way or the other.  Don’t shy away from these types of posts, say what you feel and your audience will be moved.  There are too many people who wring the emotion out of their work, don’t let this happen to you. 

Many bloggers, especially those in business in technology write as if they are afraid to be wrong, and seem to think if they have one misstep they’ll be ruined.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  You might as well not even keep a blog if you’re worried about being wrong on something – we’re only human and part of that is making mistakes and being wrong.  Certainly there is no better way to learn than making mistakes, and in fact if you aren’t making any in your blogging, you haven’t been doing it long enough.  No one is gets it right all the time. 

Bloggers like traditional writers have different styles. Do I agree with every blogger I come across? No. Do some of them make me uncomfortable? At times, yes. But they are entitled to their opinions.
Sometimes I find myself  writing about gardening, other times sharing a recipe, or showing you my latest photography or vintage find, or telling you about a restaurant or a shop I stumbled across that I thought was pretty cool.

But sometimes I’m going to have purely opinion driven piece of how I feel about something or something I don’t care for or something I am  questioning. 

Sometimes I even write about politics, religion, social politics, or even parenting topics. However, the  unfortunate thing is in today’s land of political correctness, these non-Suzy homemaker and gardener posts often amount to social crucifixion. 

Sometimes I wonder if sociologically, we are regressing? Are we bringing back the Scarlet letter?  Dunking people to see if they  sink or float, thereby determining if they are a witch or not?

A lot of this phenomenon is determined by keyboard courage. A lot of people feel very free  to express themselves in certain ways that they would never do in person in. Hence the advent in our society of cyber bullying. Some just perform a “bless your heart” on you and think you don’t realize it and keep on moving.

I have friends who have online presences to compliment  their various aspects of business and even they experience these online kerfuffles. One recently described it and pretty simplistic terms. They said you can say the sky is blue, and you will get 50 comments telling you that you’re wrong that is cerulean or aqua. And they will fight you to the death online to make sure their opinion is the only one left standing. And why?  Because you said something wrong or you said something they didn’t want to hear?

George Orwell once wrote “The enemy is the gramophone mind, whether or not one agrees with the record that is being played at the moment.”  

He also said when he was releasing Animal Farm (quite controversial in it’s day)  “The chief danger to freedom of thought and speech at this moment is not the direct interference of  any official body. If publishers and editors exert themselves to keep certain topics out of print, it is not because they are frightened of prosecution but because they are frightened of public opinion…..intellectual cowardice is the worst enemy a writer or journalist has to face.”

I’m not comparing myself to George Orwell, let me be clear, I just found his comments timely in a weird way. Another great writer, E.B. White also touched many times on this topic of censorship. As did Galileo when it came to the Catholic Church centuries earlier.

And again, I am not comparing myself to E.B. White or Galileo. I am doing is pointing out that for a country based on certain freedoms, we certainly can be as backwards as our ancestors some days.

Having an independent thought or an opinion shouldn’t  amount to social crucifixion, but it does. Does that make me a martyr? Certainly not. It’s just another interesting thing to observe sociologically. 

And it all amounts to the more things change, the more things stay the same. Just like it is always easier to tell someone they are crazy, or infer they are a bad person, or berate or threaten them rather than have a conversation or discussion and discover opposing points of view that differ from your own. 

People react differently to things that put them out of their comfort level. Sometimes that is a positive and sometimes not. A lot of people like to live in a predictable little box where they control the universe. And that’s also OK, their universe doesn’t have to be my universe and vice versa.

I am sure this post will spark a conversation and even chiding  directed at yours truly. That’s OK. Thank you to my critics giving me more food for thought.

Thanks for stopping by on a stormy day!

adult summer reading

Yes, gardening magazines are always part of my summer reading and fall reading and my winter reading and my spring reading. But I’m not writing a post to tell you that you should be reading Fine Gardening Magazine, even if I do think it is the best gardening magazine out there today.

I am talking about a novel I just finished called Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll.

I had heard buzz about it, and a lot of people have been reading it that I know from Shipley because it was written by a Shipley graduate and basically the school at the center of the book is a fictional private school very much like Shipley.  Reese Witherspoon has also optioned the movie rights. (She had Main Line experience when she came to Philadelphia to film a movie a few years ago and if I recall correctly she rented a house somewhere around Gladwyne and Haverford during filming, but I digress.)

If you grew up on the Main Line and/or went to one of the private schools you should really read this book. It’s fascinating, darkly accurate and darn fun to read.

It’s crime fiction but it’s not just that. It also is utterly spot on as to what life in a Main Line private school could be and was like— complete with the different tiers of kids and school social status.

Truthfully, for a debut novel it’s pretty powerful and yes can be quite dark. The depiction of the lunch room is also spot on.

The funny thing is that although I’ve heard a lot of Shipley graduates talking about this book I don’t remember seeing anything that the school put out. Maybe I missed it.

Main Line Today wrote about the book and I read the article after I finished the book. I always felt that the inspiration for the other fictional school in the novel was actually Villa Maria and I think I was right. Of course this makes me wonder that one of the many brief descriptions of teachers at the school is actually a teacher I remember and not particularly fondly. 

The descriptions of the area, down to pizza places are spot on. But I would expect no less of someone who grew up in the area. But what is most fascinating to me is how accurate and unabashed the author is about writing about growing up and going to school on the Main Line. And the types of parents she writes about, we all lived through.  

One of the sub- topics in her book, the reaction to new non-WASP kids at a school, resonated with me because I have a vowel on the end of my name. I also came to Shipley in the Upper School and wasn’t a lifer. Yes, I had some friends there going into the school as a new student,  but I still remember the new girl feeling and the pit in the bottom of my stomach which accompanied it.

The author also depicts the whole working in your twenties and the hoopla around weddings and the crossroads some found themselves in.

The book is a work of fiction but it is one of those books that will resonate with a lot of different people.

I will admit I have a thing about books and movies set in this area. That is what drew me to the book initially. What kept me is the main character. Sort of an anti-heroine but oddly real for a fictional character. I liked her and I loved the novel. Check the book out!

Thanks for stopping by.

in the pocket visits east whiteland

post cover

You have to give East Whiteland Township and Friends of Summer Stage credit. They do summer concerts  right!  Last evening’s concert  courtesy of them, Point Entertainment, and WXPN, was  David Uosikkinen’s In The Pocket.

post 1Davis Uosikkinen is with the Hooters. This is his own individual project and he calls it “Essential Songs of Philadelphia”. And it so is. His band is a revolving and evolving cast of the men and woman who give Philadelphia it’s unique musical perspective and sound, and in many cases have for years and years.  The line up depends on the availability of the artist.post 2

Last evening the concert was moved from Valley Creek Park into the conference center at  Penn State Great Valley. The line-up was amazing –

David Uosikkinen – The Hooters, Kenny Aaronson – Bob Dylan / John Eddie,Richard Bush – The A’s,Steve Butler – Smash Palace,Tommy Conwell – The Young Rumblers, Jay Davidson – Steve Winwood / The Funk Brothers,Greg Davis – Beru Revue,Jeffrey Gaines,Jerry Getz – Beru Revue,Cliff Hillis ,Kenn Kweder,Charlie & Richie Ingui – Soul Survivors,Zou Zou Mansour,Wally Smith – Smash Palace / Crosstown Traffic.

I will also note that David’s son Samuel Uosikkinen played with In The Pocket as well last evening. He is a very talented musician in his own right!

post 5

I loved every song. I will admit a Richard Bush /Kinks cover and Punkrock Girl were among my favorites but Zou Zou Mansour killed it with Be My Baby, and Ken Kweeder’s Me and Mrs. Jones was also terrific!

 

The set list was:

Change Reaction – Steve Butler / Cliff Hillis
I’m Not Like Everybody Else – ZouZou Mansour
Be My Baby – ZouZou Mansour
Open My Eyes – Jeffrey Gaines
I Saw The Light – Cliff Hillis
Turn On A Dime – Cliff Hillis
Good To Be The King – Greg Davis
Moon River – Greg Davis
Me and Mrs. Jones – Kenn Kweder
Like A Rolling Stone – Kenn Kweder
Count The Days – Steve Butler
Turn On Your Love Light – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
Back Stabbers – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
Expressway To Your Heart heart emoticon – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
Punk Rock Girl – Richard Bush
You Really Got Me – Richard Bush
Sunny Afternoon – Richard Bush
Woman’s Got The Power – Richard Bush
Can’t Sit Down – Tommy Conwell
Everything They Say Is True – Tommy Conwell
If We Never Meet Again – Tommy Conwell
Workout – Tommy Conwell
I’m Not You’re Man – Tommy Conwell
Beat Up Guitar – Richard Bush w/ In The Pocket band (Everybody else)

post 6

If I really want to date myself I can admit I have been listening to Eric Bazilian and the Hooters since they would perform at places like Harriton High School back in the day.  Music is definitely a thread of continuity in our lives and this concert reminded me of so many points in time. Like in the way back time machine to when summer housemates were Avalon Cabaret girls, so you never knew which members of the bands you would find at our place, often hiding our from the groupies that would hang outside the steps of the band quarters at the Avalon Cabaret.

 

post 7In recent years, I have gotten to know other sounds like Jim Boggia (who wasn’t playing with In the Pocket last evening, but does) and Jeffrey Gaines, who used to be the neighbor of myself and friends of mine. Now Jeffrey is also a very compassionate musician and in 2007 when friends of mine and I planned a fundraiser for a woman named Moira who had been struck with viral encephalitis and needed a lot of medical care, he was among the many talented musicians who donated their time completely to a fundraiser and concert.post 4

All of the musicians who played last night were amazing! I had not seen Tommy Conwell perform in so many years, and  he has not lost a note, step, or guitar lick.

It was a truly magical musical event and if you have the chance to go see David Uosikkinen’s In The Pocket perform – run. It is an amazing experience and just an evening of awesome sounds!

guitar

BREAKING: hit and run driver sought for knox covered bridge in valley forge park

ys1

A friend of mine posted this photo above a little while ago on her Facebook page! YES! Unbelievably it happened again! Some IDIOT hit ANOTHER one of our beautiful Chester County Covered Bridges! If you recall, a truck driver with a giant tractor trailer destroyed the Rapps Dam Bridge in East Pikeland in 2014. The damages were estimated in media reports at $500000, and a repair contract wasn’t awarded until this past April.

So this beautiful bridge known as the Knox Covered Bridge is in Valley Forge Park. I have taken it’s photo easily dozens of times and walked the bridge. It’s beautiful. It is 252 on one side along the creek and Yellow Springs Road on the other.

Here is one photo I have of it that I took (I think this one is circa 2008):

2956022900_5d1fab3b1c_o

So someone according to my friend and others (including two television stations) did a hit and run on this beautiful bridge!

YS2

What kind of jerk does this???

As per PennDOT this bridge (The Knox Covered Bridge) is now structurally unsound and closed as of today. No estimates on repairs.  This is in Tredyffrin Township Police Department’s jurisdiction, here is hoping they and Tredyffrin Township in general are as diligent and thorough as East Pikeland was with Rapp’s Dam and bringing that truck driver to justice.

This bridge, the Knox Covered Bridge was just recently part of an award of monies for repairs:

Three county covered bridges to be rehabilitated

By Candice Monhollan, cmonhollan@ 21st-centurymedia.com, @CMonhollanDLN on Twitter (Pete Bannan photos)

People will be able to take a drive through history once again after PennDOT rehabilitates three covered bridges in Chester County.

PennDOT awarded a $3.2 million contract to Eastern Highway Specialists, Inc., who will set to work on the Rapps Dam covered bridge in East Pikeland, the Speakman covered bridge and West Marlborough and the Knox covered bridge in Valley Forge National Historic Park in Tredyffrin Township.

“The ideas to rehabilitate the bridges came from a variety of sources — from the county, from PennDOT, from the historic preservation community and from legislators, such as myself,” said Sen. Andy Dinniman. “PennDOT is trying to rehabilitate as many bridges on the funds that we have approved. The historic covered bridges are still being used..

Good thing that money is there, right?

Unbelievable.  If anyone out there knows anything or saw anything, please please please call Tredyffrin Police or Valley Forge Park or PennDOT. It is hard to see who is taking tips as early media reports indicate that Tredyffrin Police are sort of referring this along right now.  This apparently happened this afternoon around 2 pm but there is nothing on the Tredyffrin Police Department Website yet.

I found an email on that site that is  police@tredyffrin.org and this other information:

Tredyffrin Township Police Department

Anthony Giaimo, Superintendent of Police
Taro Landis, Lieutenant – Administrative Division
Joseph Glatts, Lieutenant – Operations Division
Organizational Chart [PDF]

Contact the Police Department
Tredyffrin Township Police Department
1100 DuPortail Road
Berwyn, PA 19312-1079

Business Number: 610-644-3221
Dispatch Number: 610-647-1440
Emergency Number: 911
Fax Number: 610-644-5394
Email Address

Office Hours: Monday – Friday, 8 am to 4:30 pm

alert

Please…if you know anything, or you say saw a damaged vehicle driving away from this direction this afternoon, PLEASE call police. This bridge is part of our heritage and our history and a lot of people still use this bridge daily. Accidents happen, but a hit and run like this is not right.  The bridge is painted white so a vehicle could have all sorts of white paint on it and hopefully Tredyffrin will do their bit and see if any automobile paint is on the damage. yes, yes I know a little Nancy Drew meets CSI but this is such an awesome bridge!

Here is the media I have discovered thus far on this:

Car Strikes Covered Bridge In Tredyffin

The bridge, located in Valley Forge National Historical Park, has suffered structural damage and is closed indefinitely.

Authorities are seeking a driver who reportedly struck a covered bridge in Tredyffin Township Monday afternoon.

Knox Bridge, located where Yellow Springs Road crosses Valley Creek in Valley Forge National Historical Park, was hit by an unknown vehicle at approximately 2:30 p.m. According to Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) spokesman Gene Blaum, the only information currently known about the vehicle is that it was ”large.”

The bridge remains closed indefinitely pending a PennDOT investigation….

Later, in a PennDOT statement, Blaum reported that ”nearly an entire stone-masonry wing wall adjacent to the bridge” had been damaged along with a 20-foot-long section of its timber siding….

Originally built in 1865, the Knox Bridge has rehabilitated twice, in 1996 and again in 2006.

Asked for comment, a representative for the Tredyffin Police Department referred all questions to Valley Forge National Historical Park, where an official in turn said any new information would come from PennDOT

 

CBS3:   Covered Bridge In Valley Forge National Historical Park Closed Due To Damage 

6ABC Action News (has video) TRAFFIC Covered bridge struck in Chester Co.; driver sought