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File #: 210088    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: ADOPTED
File created: 2/4/2021 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 2/11/2021
Title: Commemorating the life and legacy of community activist Russell Meddin, whose tireless advocacy for vibrant public space and public bike share led to millions of Philadelphians enjoying and celebrating the City of Philadelphia's public trails and provided a powerful model of civic engagement for the nation and the world.
Sponsors: Councilmember Gym, Council President Clarke, Councilmember Gilmore Richardson, Councilmember Bass, Councilmember Brooks, Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember Domb, Councilmember Squilla
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 21008800, 2. Signature21008800
Title
Commemorating the life and legacy of community activist Russell Meddin, whose tireless advocacy for vibrant public space and public bike share led to millions of Philadelphians enjoying and celebrating the City of Philadelphia's public trails and provided a powerful model of civic engagement for the nation and the world.

Body
WHEREAS, Russell Meddin was a longtime Logan Square resident, known for his infectious laugh and his involvement in and passion for neighborhood civic engagement issues that ranged from clean-ups and children's events at his local park to local ward politics to the founding of the Schuylkill River Park Alliance and Bike Share Philadelphia. Russell was the first to welcome new residents. He gardened abandoned dirt plots to bring them to floral glory and celebrated all things Philadelphia. No job was too big or too small if it meant improving the quality of life of his neighbors; and

WHEREAS, In 2004, Russell along with neighborhood leaders, took on CSX Transportation when CSX threatened to close off access to Schuylkill River Park, which community organizations had been laboring to improve for years. Russell's tireless leadership and the coalition's work eventually led to a legal settlement which resulted in a historic bicycle/pedestrian walkway on Spruce Street and the construction of crossing gates at the Race and Locust Street entrances to provide safe pedestrian access to the park. These were the first of their kind in the United States; and

WHEREAS, The success of that campaign led to a $23 million grant that established and expanded the Circuit Trails network for the region. Today, thanks to the vision and persistence of Russell and neighborhood leaders, Schuylkill Banks is a national model of public access and is enjoyed by more than a million people every year; and

WHEREAS, Russell continued to grow his vision for public space revitalization. In 2007, Russell founded Bike Share Philadelphia, after being inspired by a ...

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