This past December, the Bridesburg and Port Richmond sections of Philadelphia became home to the City’s first new roadway in over 30 years. Before the ribbon had even been cut, large commercial trucks, cyclists, and pedestrians were already enjoying the 0.6-mile-long extension. It was apparent from the smiles on their faces that this project has a tremendous impact on these two communities, and the City as a whole.
The new stretch of roadway includes a multi-use trail that expands upon the regional trail network, The Circuit, and extends Philadelphia’s section of the East Coast Greenway. Generous sidewalks, new landscaping, and street-lighting make this a project for everyone, not just motor vehicles. “As for our administration, we’ve had a philosophy of sharing our roads with all users, a concept called ‘complete streets,’ championed by the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities, who wants safe streets for our pedestrians, cyclists and motorists. All users have the right to use our roadways safely — all users,” said Mayor Michael Nutter.
Additionally, the new roadway connects businesses along the Delaware River waterfront directly to I-95 and the Betsy Ross Bridge. Not only does this give greater access to local businesses and residents, it also helps to relieve truck traffic off of local neighborhood streets, making them safer for the families and children that live and play there.
“As a business owner, our employees can get in and out more efficiently. It’s long overdue, especially with the new charter school, kids are constantly crossing the streets at odd hours of the day, and this is going to loop truck traffic off of Richmond Street, which is what we wanted for years,” said Tom LaCroix of the Bridesburg Business Association.
Led by the Philadelphia Streets Department and the Delaware River City Corporation, the $14.5 million, federally funded project was designed by the Streets Department and Urban Engineers.