Philadelphia Traffic Calming Initiative Pays Off

City officials say serious crashes are down by 34 percent on streets that were the target of Complete Streets projects.

1 minute read

October 12, 2023, 6:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

According to Philadelphia city officials, crashes with fatalities or serious injuries are down 34 percent on streets that received traffic calming projects, reports Thomas Fitzgerald in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

“That conclusion was based on comparing crash data on 35 stretches of roadway where the city or PennDot has built traffic-calming features with the number and severity of collisions on similar streets that were not changed,” Fitzgerald explains.

Anecdotally, residents living near the Cobb Creek Parkway, one of the streets that received a safety overhaul in 2021, say traffic is noticeably more tame.

The safety projects are part of Philadelphia’s Complete Streets initiative, which includes road diets, separated bike lanes, and Neighborhood Slow Zones, focused especially around schools. “Since the first two [Neighborhood Slow Zones] were installed in Fairhill and around Willard Elementary School in 2022, the zones have had no fatal or serious injury crashes. All reported crashes in the zones are down 75%.”

The city has a reserve of $220 million in state, federal, and local funding to continue building on Complete Streets projects over the next several years.

Tuesday, October 10, 2023 in The Philadelphia Inquirer

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