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Philadelphia, PA

Walk Friendly Communities - Silver Level

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Community Highlights

Philadelphia is designated as a Silver-level community due to their excellent wayfinding system, informational enforcement strategies, and zoning practices that encourage walking. Highlights of Philadelphia's application include:

  • Philadelphia has an excellent transit system that is located within a half mile of 85 percent of all residents and provides wheelchair accessibility at 80 percent of bus shelters.
  • Walk!Philadelphia is North America’s largest pedestrian sign system. The Walk!Philadelphia system places disk maps midblock on both sides of the street and directional signs of nearby destinations on each corner. There are over 200 disk maps and 400 directional signs covering a 400 square block area.
  • Philadelphia’s Give Respect/Get Respect campaign sends bicycle mounted officers out to patrol the neighborhoods of the Center City of Philadelphia with the highest pedestrian and bicycle related crashes. The officers watch of dangerous behaviors from motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists and provide informational pamphlets or issues warnings and citations.
  • The City Planning Commission and Department of Public Health of Philadelphia hired a Healthy Communities Coordinator to help standardize the use of Health Impact Assessment tools and methods in the planning process. This staff member is in the process of creating a Healthy Planning Toolbox with an initial set of 3 tools:
    • A Bicycling Environmental Audit Tool to assess conditions along corridors and at destinations that have measurable impacts on cyclists' health and comfort
    • A Walkability Audit Tool to assess similar issues for pedestrians, with different criteria for intersections and street segments
    • Planning and Health Indicator List and Assessment Tool (PHILATool) which is a comprehensive evaluation metric of built environment conditions affecting community health (food access, open space access, land use patterns, etc.) to provide baseline data for performing targeted HIAs at the neighborhood and district levels.