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Human Interest - Bristol Borough

Bristol Businesses to Celebrate 5th Anniversary of National Contest Win



It’s party time in Bristol Borough.

Five years ago, after one million votes were cast, Bristol won the national Small Business Revolution contest sponsored by Deluxe Corporation of Shoreview, Minnesota as the best Main Street in America.

Now, businesses in the Mill Street commercial district are planning an anniversary celebration, reflecting upon recent successes, and mapping out what comes next.

Bill Pezza, President of Raising the Bar, the economic development group that spearheaded the organizing of civic groups, schools, businesses, and private residents to win the contest, wants to use the anniversary observance as a catalyst to look to the future.

We were definitely on an upswing prior to winning the contest, but the exposure the win brought us helped things grow exponentially,” Pezza said recently.

“Since the contest, twenty-three new businesses have opened on Mill Street and the adjacent side streets. That’s an amazing number, given the pandemic. Prior to the contest win, we had a commercial vacancy rate as high as forty percent. Today, it is less than five percent and each week we field inquiries about available space.”

“While we’re thrilled about these numbers, it’s imperative that we continue to grow and spread the word about Bristol’s resurgence, and we’ve been hard at work to do that.

Recently Raising the Bar invited businesses to participate in a Destination Bristol  initiative which included billboards directing people to its Visit Bristol Borough website. The data shows a one-hundred percent increase in site visits compared to the same period last year.

The business association is reenergized with new officers recruiting members and planning spring and summer events.

The Bristol-based Steve Mooney agency of Farmers Insurance has sponsored a popular Bites of Bristol series produced by 1681 Digital Media that features brief profiles of each restaurant and owner interviews.

Cross marketing is a strong Raising the Bar emphasis, with retail shops, the Bristol Riverside Theater and historic groups teaming with hospitality establishments to offer visitors a full shopping and entertainment experience.

The positive impact expands well beyond the commercial district. Recently the Borough announced that it issued more building permits and collected more permit fees than ever before and housing sales remain brisk, sure signs that people are bullish on Bristol.

“Work hard, play hard,” is an axiom that helps sustain the effort, and Bristol is planning a party to celebrate the 2017 event that led to Bristol being featured in an eight-part video series on the HULU network.

“We have several food and spirits establishments within five hundred steps of each other,” Pezza said. “We’re calling the cluster the POUR TOUR. They’ll be hosting simultaneous happy hours from 2-4 on February 19 to celebrate the anniversary, with each offering their choice of food and drink specials and entertainment.

RTB and Business Association board member Carla Sloan said that retail shops will participate as well with special sales and discounts.

In addition, the Bristol Riverside Theater is offering a 20% discount on their February 19th performances of The Calamari Sisters Sausagefest.

We want to demonstrate to residents and visitors that what happened in 2017 was no flash in the pan. The Bristol Borough success story is on-going and growing,” Pezza said.

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Bristol Township

Turnpike Commission: Traffic Disruptions along the Pennsylvania Turnpike and I-95 in Bristol Township




The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is warning motorists of expected traffic disruptions along the Pennsylvania Turnpike and I-95 in Bristol Township due to an ongoing bridge rehabilitation project.

Starting this week, drivers merging onto I-95 northbound from the Delaware Valley Interchange acceleration ramp will encounter a temporary stop sign. The stop sign is in place through August 11 and is being placed to facilitate safe merging near the Levittown/Bristol Interchange (Exit 42). Additionally, on Friday, July 19, from midnight to 5 a.m. traffic pacing operations will slow vehicles to 20 to 25 mph. The intermittent 15-minute slowdowns at milepost 42.35 are planned for the safety of motorists and construction crews working on the bridge over the East Penn Railroad.

Motorists traveling eastbound and westbound on the Turnpike and northbound and southbound on I-95 in Bucks County are advised to adjust their travel plans accordingly. Pennsylvania State Police and Turnpike personnel will be on-site to guide drivers through the work zones. Travelers can also expect updates from changeable message signs along the routes, according to officials. Officials noted that the work schedule may change depending on weather conditions.

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Bristol Borough

Street Sweeper Operations Suspended for Sections of Bristol Borough



Bristol Borough officials announced late Wednesday that due to paving operations in the west ward, street sweeping would cease for one week and restart operations the week of July 24 on those streets.

“Due to paving, the street sweeper will not be sweeping these streets on Thursday and Friday, July 18th and 19th of this week:  Mifflin St., Linden St., Locust St., Maple St. and Green St.  The regular schedule will resume next week,” said a press release from the Bristol Borough Police Department.


Paving work being performed in Bristol Borough Wednesday
Credit: Jeff Bohen, Lower Bucks Source

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Bristol Township

Bristol Twp Undercover Operation Nets Alleged Crack Dealer



A Bristol Borough man is facing serious drug related charges after he was arrested by Bristol Township Detectives following two undercover buys of “crack” cocaine.

According to police, James Edwards III, 30, became the focus of a drug investigation in Bristol Township for distribution of “crack” cocaine.  On May 29, Edwards allegedly delivered .79 grams of the drug to a confidential informant between 12 p.m. and 3 p.m.  On the same day, between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m., Edwards is alleged to have delivered .82 grams of the potent drug to a confidential informant.

Edwards was arraigned by Magisterial District Judge Daniel Baranoski on Tuesday on felony two counts of manufacture, delivery, possession of a controlled substance.  He was released on unsecured bail and  is scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing on July 31 at Bristol Borough District Court.

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