This piece was an attempt at accessing a history, addressing the plight of the homeless, and to draw attention to the issues of urban blight, land use, and reclamation. A local advocacy group would like to turn the disused Reading Viaduct into a commuter path.
In 1984, the last train pulled out of Reading Terminal on Market Street in central Philadelphia. The mile-long train trestle has stood for 20 years as a weed-grown, litter-strewn relic to a bygone era. Mostly, the homeless rest their heads 20 ft above the city streets.Regional commuter trains now use the tunnel under Center City, and there is no longer train service between Philadelphia and Reading.
The former Reading train shed became the Pennsylvania Convention Center, the large white building, below and left.