Center City Closes Lanes to Test Dedicated Bike and Pedestrian Route

Although the abandoned death trap next door to you may not be a good indicator, Philadelphia has been making some major strides to enter the “Green Age” gracefully. We’ve got newly revitalized piers and parks, plans for a teched out SEPTA payment system and something called a “parklet” that, while serving no concrete purpose, looks pretty nice. That’s right, we’re well on our way to becoming the city in Sylvestor Stallone’s Demolition Man, save for the ubiquitous Taco Bell franchises.

Right now, the CCD is in the process of gauging newly proposed, dedicated bike and pedestrian lanes on Market Street and JFK Boulevard between 15th and 20th Streets. For the next two weeks, the city will close the left lanes in order to test the effects of the possible commuter route for pedestrians. Pictured right are similar bike and pedestrian lanes in New York.

While all sorts of greenery is intended to adorn the new route, for now, the lane will be simply marked by a few orange cones, so try to not get frustrated by the seemingly asinine inconvenience. CCD officials predict that, while there may be more traffic during rush hour, the lane closures shouldn’t present a major problem for Center City drivers.

In an article with Plan Philly, Streets commissioner, Steve Buckley, stated that the project would cost between $10 and $20 million and CEO of CCD Paul Levy estimates that construction is still a good two years away starting. But keep in mind that these projections don’t consider the city’s future losses resulting from lawsuits by middle-aged Center City execs who buy $2,000 mountain bikes without learning how to ride them.

Photos and info provided by Plan Philly and Center City District

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Chris Lipczynski

A graduate of Temple University, Chris Lipczynski continually spreads himself too thin, endeavoring in documentary films, “computer music,” first-person shooters, and manly hikes through the wilderness. Follow him on Twitter for daily musings and meaningless philosophical reflections: @RealChrisFlip.

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  • Dee Gradee

    this is a good thing.

  • Anonymous

    What we need before more bike paths is licenses for cyclists. And license plates. And enforcement of traffic laws for cyclists.
    Bicyclists right now are a total menace. Riding on pavements (which is against the law), ignoring traffic lights, rising against traffic, the list goes on. They cause more trouble than the supposed clean air they are helping to preserve. 
    Until they can prove they’re civilized and will play by the rules the rest of us must follow, they should be BANNED from the streets of Center City.

  • bike guest

    Then I propose all drivers who disobey the laws in Center City also be banned from the streets.

  • Schiller9o

    Every city around the world, which described to cyclists and diminished bulldozing hummer traffic has won. I am both a car and a bike driver. Some bikers get on my nerves too, but not anywhere as much as terrorist supporting, gas swilling 6000 lbs SUV’s idling on traffic lights.

  • Anonymous

    At least drivers of cars are subject to fines, penalties, and tickets. They have to have a license. Bicyclists are not subject to any of that. Until they are, they should be BANNED.

    Riding a bike does not place you above the law. And the law gives pedestrians the right of way. Cyclists never adhere to that law.

    Got anything against having cyclists licensed? So they can be subject to the same penalties as the rest of us?

  • Guest

    You are clearly misinformed, Cyclists are held to the same laws and subject to fines and tickets if caught.

  • Michael Fox

    I ride all the time, and when walking home from the subway stop from work..guess what I see.  Lots of bicycles running lights and stop signs.  I almost got ran over by 3 bikes one morning, by them running stop signs.  I support the bike lanes in philly 100%, I wish more people would take SEPTA, ride a bike, hell even walk short block trips.  But until cyclist stop blowing lights infront of tons of cars in rush hour, making a bad example of cyclist…people’s opinion will not change.  I stop and sit at all stop lights, so at least cars will see one bike that day doing it right, I hope they see alot more bikes doing it right.  

  • Nick

    awesome, get it done

  • Edwin Laboy

    good idea

  • Melvin Esh

    I was biking in Philadelphia with some friends from Holland. While riding on Pine Street, they commented the houses and biking lanes remind them of Amsterdam. It made me proud of my city.
    Yes to more safe places to ride and do a little part in decreasing air pollution. 

  • Remucho

    Bikes are such a small percentage of transportation in this city, other than kids, that the money dould and should be spent on quaility of life issues not thisn onsense’

  • Googy3030

    I doubt that a cyclist is ever ticket. A fellow bike rider here. I see riders take such foolish chances in traffic. I do support the idea of bike licenses and possible insurance. Stop weaving in traffic and ignoring stop signs and red lights. STAY in bike lanes when possible. SHARE the road. Common safety sense. 

  • ToMuchWageTax

    This is a total waist of money.  Bikes will still ride on the sidewalks, but 1/2 the parking goes away, and we have a new place for the homeless to use the bathroom.

  • Anonymous

    The operative phrase in your statement is: “if caught” Bicyclists are never caught, they ride off into the sunset after doing their damage. Like the cyclist who killed a man at 15th and Locust not that long ago. Rode away, never owned up to his crime.

    And yes I know, cyclists are subject by law to these fines and penalties but without a license, they cannot be held to account. They are criminals who get away with their crimes every day.

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