Philly Advocates Rally to Demand 30 Miles of Protected Bike Lanes

Dozens of cyclists rallied in Philadelphia this week to demand 30 miles of protected bike lanes. Photo: Bike Coalition of Greater Phildelphia
Philly residents gathered to remind Mayor Jim Kenney of his campaign promise to build protected bike lanes. Photo: Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia

Philly residents can’t wait any longer for safe bikeways. Yesterday, at a rally in the central city, dozens of people gathered to demand 30 miles of protected bike lanes, and soon.

Jim Saksa at Plan Philly reports on the campaign to ensure Mayor Jim Kenney makes good on his promise of better bike infrastructure:

The online petition, drafted by urbanist political action committee 5th Square and circulated by the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, offered support for the administration’s plans to expand the city’s bike lane network garnered 1,057 signatures. The concern: Kenney’s campaign promises to build more bike lanes would wither and disappear in the face of local opposition, after PlanPhilly reported the proposed locations of 15 new or improved lanes in April when ten of those lanes received federal funds.

Under the federal grant terms, Philadelphia has until 2018 to begin construction, but cycling advocates hoped the petition’s 1,000-plus signatures would inspire the city to move faster than that.

“We hope the administration is encouraged and inspired by today’s rally and press conference to accelerate the momentum of installing bike lanes throughout the city,” said Sarah Clark Stuart, executive director of the Bicycle Coalition.

Stuart explained what she meant by “accelerate the momentum”: “So we’re not waiting for [construction] to begin in the summer of 2018, but for it to end by the summer of 2018.”

The rally comes weeks before the city expects to break ground on Philadelphia’s first parking-protected bike lane along Ryan Avenue between Lexington and Rowland Streets.

Elsewhere on the Network today: Market Urbanism reports that the Massachusetts Senate passed major zoning reform legislation that should lead to more compact development. The Urban Edge shares evidence that Houston is making strides on walkability, but continued progress is far from assured. And Broken Sidewalk looks at a Louisville street that has segregated the city and how to heal the divide.

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