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Source: Press Release
Date: August 24, 2003
Byline: Friends of Historic Bethlehem Pike

New Residents' Organization Develops Slogan and Will Demonstrate Daily to Preserve Historical Architecture and Promote Smart Growth Along Bethlehem Pike

For immediate release
For more information:
Ellen Manning, 215-482-9322 or Barb Sherf 215-990-9317 (cell)

Rally Set for Thursday, September 4 - Township Meetings 8th and 10th

SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP, MONTGOMERY COUNTY - On Saturday, August 23, 2003, following a 2-hour demonstration in front of the historic Black Horse Inn, the Friends of Historic Bethlehem Pike held their plan for action meeting. Two dozen members of the group spent three hours discussing goals and the submission of a new plan by the Moreland Development Group for the historic Black Horse Inn property. The plans will be presented during a Springfield Township Commissioners workshop meeting on Monday, September 8th at 7:30 p.m. and the regularly scheduled monthly meeting on Wednesday, September 10th at 8 p.m. at the township building located at 1510 Paper Mill Road. The public is urged to attend both sessions.

The group was brought together by their concern over poorly planned development along Bethlehem Pike, including the proposal to build a 24-hour Walgreen's drug store and super liquor store on the historic Black Horse Inn property, which dates back to 1744. They have met with Chalfont residents who successfully thwarted plans for an Eckerd drugstore in their community.

The group came up with a slogan for this campaign, which is: Preserve the Pike: Plan for Our Future, Respect Our Past.

Several local attorneys have come forward to review legal aspects of the case.

Volunteers will continue to demonstrate from 7:30-8:30 a.m. and 5 to 6 p.m. weekdays and 10-noon on Saturdays until the September 8 meeting to bring attention to the proposed development. A demonstration will be held on Thursday, September 4th in front of the Walgreen's District Office at 370 Commerce Drive, Suite 102, Fort Washington, PA. Interested individuals should meet at and carpool from the closed K-Mart (automotive services area) in the Flourtown Shopping Center at 11:45. The demonstration will take place from noon to 1 p.m.

Later on September 4th, residents are urged to meet at the closed K-Mart in the Flourtown Shopping Center at 5 p.m. and march down Bethlehem Pike to demonstrate in front of the Black Horse Inn until 6 p.m. to bring attention to the two upcoming township meetings. The group will then march down the opposite side of the Pike, handing out flyers and information along the way.

Updates on this issue are posted at http://www.ushistory.org/blackhorse.

Residents are also being urged to contact Walgreen Company Corporate Offices at 800-925-4733 as well as CEO Dave Bernauer at dave.bernauer@walgreens.com and locally to call John Beswick, Philadelphia Area District Manager at 215-591-5085 to urge Walgreen's to consider moving to a more appropriate location.

The Friends of Historic Bethlehem Pike is dedicated to preserving the historic and architectural integrity and of Bethlehem Pike; advocating for the creation of historic ordinances for Bethlehem Pike and the adjacent communities; encouraging responsible economic redevelopment of Bethlehem Pike and promoting a safe, pedestrian-friendly corridor which reflects the residential nature of the neighborhoods along the Pike.

The Friends can be reached at P.O. Box 164, Flourtown, PA 19031 and 215.482.9322 or 215.233.8022. E-mail ESManning22@hotmail.com.