Philadelphia’s 30th Street Station May Retain Its Iconic Split-Flap Sign

Image via Emma Lee, WHYY.

The iconic split-flap sign at the 30th Street Station in Philadelphia could avoid being digitized and may use a new split-flap schedule board instead, writes Darryl Murphy for WHYY.

U.S. Rep. Brendan Boyle has been at the forefront of the efforts to save the sign after Amtrak planned to replace it with a digital board. The congressman, Amtrak officials, and local stakeholders met recently to talk about the preservation of the sign, known as a “Solari board.”

However, the beloved 1970s sign does not comply with the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act and does not integrate with Amtrak’s Passenger Information Display System.

“The belief is that in order to come in with ADA compliance to retrofit this actual sign behind us would be enormously challenging and costly,” said Boyle.

But engineering design company Oat Foundry that specializes in split-flap signs has offered a solution with a modern sign in the vintage style of the old Solari board.

Amtrak has not yet given a firm commitment on this without seeing the formal plans, but Boyle said he strongly feels they will consider it as an option.

Read more about the plans for the sign at WHYY here.

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