Transit and city officials celebrated the $30 million rehab of two subway stations on the Broad Street Line Monday morning — holding a ribbon cutting at the Spring Garden Street station and marking similar renovations at the Girard Avenue station.
The ceremony marked the end of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority’s construction activities funded by federal stimulus funds — a total of 32 projects across the area over the last three years.
“These projects have created over 3,200 jobs, local jobs, in Philadelphia,” said SEPTA’s general manager, Joe Casey. “SEPTA is integral to the social and economic vitality of the city. We are proud to contribute to the transformation of the North Broad Street corridor.”
Renovations at Spring Garden and Girard were the largest two projects on SEPTA’s list. Both stations, each of which serves 10,000 passengers a day, date to the 1920s. Neither had been updated since their construction. Upgrades at the two stations generated 507 jobs, Casey said.
Among the new features: elevators, new cashiers’ booths, fare lines, turnstiles, stairs, improved lighting and reconstruction to pillars and concrete. In addition, each station was given electrical system upgrades and new fire alarm systems and fire control systems. Both also had public art installations put in place.
Elected officials hailed the improvements as a key to revitalizing the North Broad Street corridor — and the city as a whole.
“This is why our city is growing. This is why we are able to get people to jobs and to schools,” said U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah. “We’re enhancing Community College. We’re enhancing the opportunities right here on North Broad.”
Mayor Michael Nutter agreed.
“This is what infrastructure renewal is all about,” he said. “It’s about jobs, about putting people to work.”
The two newly revitalized stations represented just part of a slate of projects that SEPTA has done across the city. Other big ticket projects include the redesign of Dilworth Plaza and plans to improve the Wayne Junction station. Funding for the work came from the stimulus plan, which sent $191 million to Philadelphia. According to Fattah, the state received $18 billion in federal stimulus funding.
“When people talk about the stimulus act … for the naysayers, let them come to Broad and Spring Garden,” Fattah said.