Washington Avenue

New Repaving Plan to Make Busy Philly Road Safer for Cyclists, Pedestrians

The plan comes after years of safety concerns for Washington Avenue from neighbors and businesses.

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What to Know

  • On Monday, Philadelphia announced it will reconfigure Washington Avenue from its current five-lane layout to a three-lane layout between 4th Street and Grays Ferry Avenue as part of a repaving project in 2021. 
  • The plan comes after the Philadelphia’s Office of Transportation, Infrastructure and Sustainability (OTIS) asked for input on three design options for Washington Avenue from residents, businesses and community organizations and received more than 5,400 responses. 
  • Under the new plan, Washington Avenue’s driving lanes will be reduced from five to three. There will also be two parking lanes and two parking-protected bike lanes.

A repaving plan that aims to make one of South Philadelphia’s busiest streets safer for cyclists and pedestrians is set to begin next year. 

On Monday, the city announced it will reconfigure Washington Avenue from its current five-lane layout to a three-lane layout between 4th Street and Grays Ferry Avenue as part of a repaving project in 2021. 

The plan comes after the Philadelphia’s Office of Transportation, Infrastructure and Sustainability (OTIS) asked for input on three design options for Washington Avenue from residents, businesses and community organizations. OTIS received more than 5,400 responses. 

Officials said 71% of the online survey respondents preferred the three-lane design. 

Under the new plan, Washington Avenue’s driving lanes will be reduced from five to three. There will also be two parking lanes and two parking-protected bike lanes. The three-lane layout will extend from Grays Ferry Avenue to 16th Street and from 12th Street to 5th Street. 

The plan comes after years of safety concerns for Washington Avenue from neighbors and businesses. Officials say there were 254 crashes on Washington Avenue between 2012 and 2018 and pedestrians and cyclists were over-represented in those crashes. 

In addition to improving safety for pedestrians and cyclists, the new layout will also include “floating bus islands” for SEPTA Route 64 riders on every bus stop, allowing riders to safely get on and off the bus. 

Traffic signals along Washington Avenue will also be re-timed to improve vehicle flow, new loading spaces will help reduce double-parking and new timed parking regulations will help create more frequently available short-term parking. 

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