Philadelphia’s own sternwheel riverboat has arrived on the Delaware River and, after a $2-million renovation, will start cruising in October.

phila belle wide karin Sternwheeler Phila. Belle Readied for Fall Cruises

KYW’s Karin Phillips reports from the waterfront that the towering Philadelphia Belle, more than five stories high and almost 300 feet in length, is now berthed near Market Street at Penn’s Landing after travelling two weeks from its home in Illinois.

Tom Corcoran, president of the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation, says the new paddlewheel boat, with its unique cruises, is coming at a time when new plans are being laid for Penn’s Landing:

“So it’s an exciting time and there are a lot of things happening, but having something like the Philadelphia Belle come in the middle of all this really helps create a sense of momentum, too.”

Operation of the Philadelphia Belle brings about 250 new jobs to Philadelphia.  Mayor Michael Nutter says it shows that the city is on its way back from trying times:

“It says that Philadelphia is still an exciting place that people want to invest in.  That we’re one of the great river cities, not only of the nation but of the world.”

(Photos by KYW’s Karin Phillips)

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