News & Announcements
The College Heights Association
The College Heights Association was incorporated under the Non-profit Corporation Law of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1975 to protect and advance the interests of the College Heights neighborhood and its residents.
All persons residing in the College Heights neighborhood are eligible for membership. The Association holds an annual meeting for the purpose of reviewing actions of the Association over the past year and proposing action for the Association for the coming year. Additional meetings may be held at other time for discussion of current issues.
College Heights NewsletterThe newsletter for Fall 2019 can be found here.
Write to Save LivesFollowing the most recent fatal accident at the Atherton Street/Park Avenue intersection, Police Chief Tom King spoke with well over 100 local residents Tuesday (July 7) evening. He noted that both red light cameras (ARLE) and radar are critical to improving safety at that and other Centre Region locations.
Legislative authorization is required for both devices. Other PA municipalities (e.g. Philadelphia and its suburban counties, Pittsburgh) have red light cameras. PA is the only state in the nation without laser authorization for local accredited police departments.
According to Chief King, CITIZEN INPUT IS CRITICAL TO MOTIVATE OUR LEGISLATORS TO TAKE MUCH NEEDED ACTION. Thus we ask you to write to those listed below, requesting their support for both ARLE and radar authorization. Some possible talking points:
- Existing ARLE legislation should be expanded to all counties meeting requirements (e.g., 20,000+ population, accredited police department, PennDOT-approved intersections).
- In all US states except PA, every local police department is permitted to use radar. PA state police are permitted to use radar. (PA authorizes local police to use guns, but not radar.)
- Drivers speeding and going through red lights endanger pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers throughout every day, with alarming frequency.
- Police reports indicate tens of thousands of pedestrian crossings at signalized State College intersections each day.
- State College's 2+ million annual visitors result in an inordinate amount of additional vehicular traffic intermixed with heavy pedestrian traffic.
- State College becomes 3rd largest PA municipality on event weekends(e.g., football, Arts Festival).
- Local police lack sufficient staff to consistently monitor dangerous intersections.
- State College Borough Council passed resolutions supporting local police use of ARLE and radar.
An ARLE information sheet can be found here.
Please send messages to:
- Senator Jake Corman: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Hon. Scott Conklin: email@example.com
- Hon. Kerry Benninghoff: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Hon. Rich Irvin: RIrvin@pahousegop.com
- Hon. Mike Hanna: email@example.com
- Kevin Kline, PennDOT District Executive: firstname.lastname@example.org
Update from Tom King
On July 7 State College Police Chief Tom King spoke with area residents about the North Atherton Street/Park Avenue intersection. On July 24 he provided this update.
- Both Tom Zilla and Capt. Matt Wilson took notes at the July 7th meeting. They both typed their notes and sent them to me. I have put them into two broad categories; Comments and Suggestions.
- Later that week, PennDOT delivered and set up a temporary camera on the southwest side of this intersection. They came to our police department and got the log ins for this camera established and SCPD now has access to viewing this intersection. Our IT Department is in the process of getting the necessary equipment to record the activity at this intersection. We expect to have this equipment for the next 6-8 weeks in order to observe activity at this intersection both before students return and after they return.
- On July 17th, Capt Wilson, Amy Kerner, and Alan Sam met with Michele Halsell and two Civil Engineering professors to discuss their graduate level students conducting some studies or assisting in other ways at the Atherton/Park intersection. The professors are very excited about having their students assist so we are working on further identifying what type of work these students will perform. We may be able to have them assist with all of the data and video gathers from the temporary public cameras that will be in place for the next 6 weeks or so.
- The Borough Police Department and Public Works Department met with seven (7) PennDOT officials including the District Executive Kevin Kline on Thursday (7/23) solely to discuss this intersection. Also attending the meeting was Matt Wise from Sen. Corman's office and Ton Zilla from Centre County MPO. Part of the meeting was a presentation from a PennDOT employee on how the Automatic Red Light Enforcement (ARLE) is working in both Philadelphia and Abington Twp (Montgomery County).
- Over the next 1 to 2 weeks, PennDOT is going to meet and go through all of the comments and suggestions offered at the July 7th meeting and provide feedback on the various comments and suggestions.
- Beginning the week of August 10th, SCPD will have police department staff monitor the temporary camera and track the various activities/behaviors at that intersection. They will be charting various violations including red light violations, illegal right turns on red, drivers failing to yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk, pedestrian violations, bicycle violations, and any near crashes. The exact hours we will be monitoring the intersection has not been finalized but much of the focus will be on peak use times (weekdays 7:30 - 9:30 am, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm, and 4:00 - 6:00 pm).
- Increased Officer Presence and Enforcement - since our July 7th meeting, SCPD officers have conducted much more enforcement at this intersection and will continue this increased presence as long as staffing and call volume permits.
- Our investigation into the fatal crash at Atherton and Park on June 22nd is nearly complete. The only information we are still awaiting is the autopsy report which generally takes about 6 weeks to receive. I am hopeful we will have that report in about 2 weeks and then we can provide our findings.
Historic Property Designation
A number of properties contribute to College Heights' designation as one of State College's historic districts. The Historic Resources Commission encourages owners of those properties to recognize those structures with an Historic Plaque.
To determine whether or not your property is on the list of those contributing to the Historic District designation, please contact John Wilson at email@example.com or call 323-7109. Information about the plaques can be found at this borough link.
On-street Parking Permission
For permission to park on College Heights streets posted No Parking, residents should call 814-954-1019. Between 8 am and 10 pm Monday through Saturday the call will either be answered by a live person or returned within one hour. On Sundays and holidays, residents should leave a message, including location, date and time for which permission is requested and vehicle license number. Granting of permission can then be assumed unless streets must be clear for snow removal. No parked vehicles may block driveways, fire hydrants, or intersections at any time.
Annual MembershipAnnual membership dues of $10 are payable to the College Heights Association for a term of membership from the beginning of September to the end of August of each year. Dues may
be mailed to:
Kevin McGarry, Treasurer
534 Ridge Avenue
State College, PA 16803
Report Violations of Borough OrdinancesState College Borough now has an online form for Borough residents' use in reporting violations of Borough ordinances (e.g. snow removal, weeds, parking, trash removal, noise, unauthorized residents, etc.). The form goes directly to the Ordinance Enforcement and Public Health staff, where it will be addressed. The link for this form is here, and the form also is available under both the Ordinance Enforcement and Public Health drop-down menus in the Department of Ordinance Enforcement and Public Health section of the State College Borough web site.
While none of us is eager to take on this role, as the Planning Office has stressed, often the only way staff members learn of violations is through neighbors' reporting.
Information on Neighborhood PreservationFor important information regarding the Borough strategic plan's #1 goal, neighborhood preservation, please click here.