The Future is Crossable: Frankford Avenue in Fishtown Introduces Pedestrian-oriented Intersection Improvements
It’s one small stop for cars, one giant relief for pedestrian-kind.
This weekend the City of Philadelphia installed stop signs, curb extensions, and crosswalks at Fishtown’s well-used 3-way intersection of Frankford avenue, Thompson and Shackamaxon streets! Now, as I do from time-to-time with this blog, please excuse me as I put my civic engagement citizen’s hat on for a post and talk more Streets Department than Streets Dept…
You may remember an article I wrote for Plan Philly in the summer of 2015 that talked about the need to make Frankford avenue in Fishtown more walkable/crossable (if you don’t, please feel free to check it out in-full HERE!) In it, I wrote:
“As a life-long Fishtowner, I take real pride in my neighborhood, and I’m thrilled about all the excitement along Frankford Avenue, these past few years especially. From art galleries, to cafes, to tech companies, to vintage shops, and clothing stores, Frankford Avenue in Fishtown is attracting all sorts of much-needed local businesses.”
“What Frankford Avenue is currently still missing, however, is walkability, or more pointedly crossability. Sandwiched between two El stops and surrounded by densely populated neighborhoods, there’s no reason why pedestrians should not have full access to this half-mile of highly used commercial corridor.”
“So what can we do? In my opinion, we need stop signs or at the very least crosswalks with pedestrian activated signals. Thompson, Belgrade, Marlborough, and Oxford streets would be good places to study this opportunity for safety improvements.”
Well, it seems I was FAR from the only person calling for more crossable intersections on Frankford avenue. In fact, the Fishtown Neighbors Association has apparently been working with the City for almost a year now to plan for and implement the Frankford/ Thompson/ Shackamaxon intersection improvements we’re all seeing this weekend. Great work, y’all!
And the improvements couldn’t have come at a more curial time, because as Billy Penn reported this week six people walking around Philly were killed by vehicles just this past November alone.
Let’s hope the City is working to make more intersections around Philly more crossable, including more intersections along Frankford avenue in Fishtown, which even with this weekend’s much-need improvements will still have a near half-mile stretch (from Thompson street to Palmer street) that is completely un-crossable by pedestrians.
And in addition to the need for more crossable intersections going up Frankford avenue, I wonder if we could maybe make Front street up to Lehigh avenue one-way for vehicle traffic and create a two-way protected bike lane?! Because…