PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — SEPTA says it will reopen the Somerset Station on the Market-Frankford Line on Monday after it closed for two weeks for repairs and a safety review. CBS3 cameras captured what it’s really like on the streets there and why we all need to care about what’s happening in Kensington.
“We’re not a third-world country and we shouldn’t have people living all over the street,” City Councilmember Mark Squilla said.READ MORE: Allegations Of Sexual Misconduct Involving Ocean City Beach Patrol Members Under Investigation
Squilla, whose district includes part of Kensington, had harsh words for the Kenney Administration about conditions along the Market-Frankford El as SEPTA announced the reopening of its Somerset Station.
“The Somerset Station is just a synopsis of what is happening in and around that community,” Squilla said.
“It’s a lot of feces inside the elevators. It’s really nasty. People, they can’t even use the elevators, and then you got people that sit in elevators and get high,” one rider said.
CBS3 cameras captured trash, needles, open drug use, and people living on the streets. Officials warn trying to contain the issue isn’t working.READ MORE: Multiple Faiths Joining Forces To Combat Philadelphia's Rising Gun Violence
“We’re starting to see this behavior throughout the city in every district in the city of Philadelphia and it will only get worse if we don’t resolve it now,” Squilla said
“Now that the train station has closed down, everybody is down in Allegheny. Allegheny is foul,” one rider said.
While SEPTA and local leaders have announced changes including an on-site police station, security officers to enforce loitering laws and community outreach support, many now look to the city to do more.
“We need some enforcement mechanisms, there has to be consequences for negative actions, there has to be consequences for crimes,” Squilla said.
In a statement to CBS3, the mayor’s office says they are committed to alleviating conditions created by opioid addiction and chronic street homelessness. They also anticipate releasing a new action plan to address these issues in the coming weeks.MORE NEWS: 2 Mothers, Babies Rushed To Hospital After Being Rescued From Burning Frankford Apartment Building, Officials Say
CBS3’s Alicia Roberts reports.