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Rolling Through Philly: A Look At The Market–Frankford Line El from Above

October 29, 2017

Welcome to the latest video in the 12-part Streets Dept + WeFilmPhilly collaborative #PhillyMinute series!

WeFilmPhilly is a Philadelphia-based (duh!) video production company that specializes in high quality drone aerial photography, aerial 4K video, and video production. Since August of 2017, Streets Dept has been working with WeFilmPhilly to create monthly videos that explore Philly’s public art and architecture from new angles. Each video is shot from above with aerial drone footage and sound recorded from the ground.

For October’s video, our third installment, we’re exploring SEPTA’s Market-Frankford Line El from above. Specifically, the El as it rolls through Kensington.

Philly’s El keeps the city moving and connects dozens of neighborhoods from west to east. With more than 187,000 riders on an average weekday, the El is the busiest route in the SEPTA system. And if you’ve ever ridden the El at rush hour, you know it.

Personally, the El is my main form of transportation (aside from walking,) and I’ve been taking it regularly since I was 14 going to high school. The El, interestingly enough, has also had two pretty significant rolls in helping me to legitimize this blog and the activism work I do. The first, the year I launched, back in 2011, a yarnbomb installation that Philly street artist Ishknits did on the El went viral. And because she invited me along exclusively to shoot her installing the work, when it ultimately got a lot of national and international attention all the clicks were pointed back to my original post driving insane traffic to my 3-month-old blog, earning me a big new audience. The second, a petition campaign I started back in 2014, titled #SEPTA247, which called for SEPTA to reintroduce overnight weekend service to Philly’s el and subway trains was ultimately (over the course of roughly nine months) successful. This energized me like nothing else, and for truly one of the first times, I think, in my life made me realize how possible change is and why it’s so important to never stop pushing.

Suffice it to say, the El means a lot to me as it does to countless other Philadelphians… Keep on rolling, El, I’ll see you tomorrow!

See August’s video here, and September’s video here! If you’re interested in collaborating with WePhillyPhilly, reach out to them here.

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