WEST CHESTER (April 23) – State Senator Andy Dinniman announced today that Acting Pennsylvania Secretary of Transportation Leslie Richards will attend the Coatesville Centennial Kickoff Celebration set for Monday at the Coatesville Train Station.

“We want to welcome Acting Secretary Richards to Coatesville,” Dinniman said. “Monday’s celebration presents a great opportunity to showcase Coatesville’s endless potential for revitalization and economic growth starting with the construction of the new train station and moving along 3rd Avenue into the heart of the downtown business district.”

railroad-166535_1280In addition, Dinniman announced that the design process for the 3rd Avenue Streetscapes project is now almost halfway complete and conceptual designs will be available to the public during the Centennial Kickoff Celebration. During the event, there will also be a large display of the three parts of the train station gateway project – streetscapes, education center and train platform.

Dinniman is currently working with PennDOT and the design team to organize a community meeting to seek public input on the conceptual design plans. The meeting will take place at the end of May.

“My hope is that by the end of this year construction will begin on work to improve the gateway to the city at the new train station,” Dinniman said.

Dinniman also said that momentum continues to grow behind plans to build a career training and education center as part of the redevelopment of the new Coatesville Train Station.

PennDOT officials are working on plans to redesign, rebuild and restore frequent service to Coatesville Train Station. As a result of Dinniman’s leadership and discussions with him and other officials, the department is behind the idea of constructing a building that will have a dual purpose – a waiting area on one hand and a center for education and job training, with workspace for new entrepreneurs similar to the center at Walnut Street Labs in West Chester, on the other.

The tentative site for the station building and training center is set for the 300 block of Fleetwood Street where an entire block of row homes were destroyed by arson fire in 2008.

“Community involvement continues play a key role in Coatesville’s redevelopment plans,” Dinniman said. “Some of the most promising initiatives and the best ideas – like the development of a career and education center right at the train station – are coming directly from local residents. That is why we need residents to come out to the upcoming meeting and to continue to play a hands-on role in the rebirth of their city.”

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