Help Desk, and the government workers we pester with phone calls, have been getting results for you. Here are some updates on recent problems you called us about:
YOU WON'T GET LOST: Two weeks ago, we wrote about missing street signs at major intersections along Aramingo Avenue, which PennDOT began reconstructing in June 2010. PennDOT spokesman Charles Metzger had told us that signs would be back up at the Aramingo intersections with Castor Avenue, with Ontario Street and with Venango by the end of the first week of May.
Help Desk took a drive along Aramingo several days ago and spotted snazzy orange street signs at all three intersections. Although the signs are temporary, at least drivers know where they are now.
PennDOT still intends to install permanent signs, Metzger said.
YOU WON'T TRIP: In April, Help Desk reported on a tree that fell across Audubon Avenue in the Northeast - eight months after a city inspector deemed it to be in poor condition and scheduled it for removal.
Luckily, no one was injured when the tree came down, and the city removed it that day. But the stump remained in the ground, and neighbors were worried it might create a tripping hazard.
At the time, Barry Bessler, chief of staff at the Fairmount Park Commission, told Help Desk that the stump had been slated for removal, and the city would likely get to the job in 90 to 120 days.
Turns out it took one day. The city removed the stump the day after we spoke with Bessler, leaving a pile of fresh chips for mulch in its place.
THERE'S NO LONGER A TRUCK IN THE CREEDK BEHIND YOUR HOUSE: The pickup that had been squatting in Morrell Park's Byberry Creek for a decade is finally gone, Sgt. Frank Spires of the Neighborhood Services Unit (NSU) tells Help Desk. The removal, a team effort of the NSU, the Water Department and the golf course next to the creek, involved creating a path to the creek for a backhoe to traverse. The only cost was manpower.
BUT ... YOU STILL MIGHT FALL ONTO TRAIN TRACKS: There's still no fence separating the backs of homes on the 6400 block of Glenmore Avenue in Southwest Philadelphia from nearby Amtrak tracks. In late March, Amtrak officials told City Council President Anna Verna's office that the rail agency hoped to install a new, stronger fence at the end of April, if its budget allowed.
But, last week, Help Desk caught up with Lauren Hall, who owns a rental property on the block, and there's still no fence at the top of the steep embankment leading down to the tracks.
We asked Amtrak for a comment, but it hasn't provided one yet.
Kirstin Lindermayer, Ashley Nguyen and Juliana Reyes contributed to this report. Have a concern about city services? Let us know at www.thecityhowl.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 215-854-5855.