The City announced today that it will reconfigure Washington Avenue from its current five-lane layout to a mixed-lane layout between 4th Street to Grays Ferry Avenue as part of a repaving project scheduled for later this year.

About the mixed-lane layout design:

The mixed-lane layout design was proposed by the City in 2020 as an option to achieve the Washington Avenue Repaving and Improvement project goals, and has been part of the City’s ongoing conversations with the community since then.

Washington Avenue is on the City’s Vision Zero High Injury Network and has more crashes than the average Philadelphia street. The road has not been repaved since 2003 and combining street improvements with a repaving project is an efficient use of City funding. This is an opportunity to improve the safety and function of Washington Avenue, fulfilling one of the project’s main goals to improve mobility for all users who travel along the road.

The proposed design for Washington Avenue has been modified with improvements in 2022, specifically regarding pedestrian safety. These improvements include:

  • Pedestrian head start signal timing (or leading pedestrian interval)
  • Speed cushions and speed slots
  • Soft rumble strips
  • Corner wedges
  • Hardened centerlines at select locations
  • Automated red light cameras
    • Installation of automated red light enforcement cameras will take place next year on the corridor in partnership with program administrator, the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA).
  • Bus boarding islands
    • Bus boarding islands installed at street level with the paving project will be upgraded to concrete islands next year in partnership with SEPTA.

The mixed option will incorporate the following cross sections and protected bike lanes (see map below):

  • 4 blocks with existing 5 lane cross sections from 16th to 12th Streets
  • 8 blocks with  4 lane cross sections from Grays Ferry Avenue to 25th Street, 20th Street to 16th Street, 12th Street to 10th and 5th to 4th Street
  • 10 blocks that have 3 lane cross sections from 25th Street to 20th Street and 10th Street to 5th Street
  • 18 blocks with protected bike lanes from Grays Ferry Avenue to 16th Street and 12th Street to 4th Street

a map of washington ave showing proposed lane changes

What you can do

  • Attend a public meeting: For anyone interested in taking a closer look at the design and asking questions, the City will host a public open house tonight, Tuesday, March 1 at 6:30 p.m. at the Christian Street YMCA on 1724 Christian Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19146. The event will also be live-streamed via Facebook/PhilaOTIS.
  • Share your opinion: Proposed parking and loading regulations​ will go through a City council process. This process will include public hearings where members of the public can provide testimony. The City will continue to engage with the PPA and anticipates enforcement of parking and loading on the corridor will continue and likely increase.

Next steps

  • Parking and loading regulations will be reviewed via a City Council process. Legislation is needed to implement these regulations.
  • Repaving work will begin later this year. Community members and businesses will be notified by the City via Registered Community Organization (RCO) networks, email channels, no parking signs, automated calls, and more, before and during construction.
  • The City has been in conversation with the community since 2013 and the announced mixed lane design responds to what we have heard from the community. While this announcement is the culmination of the community engagement process for the repaving project, the City will continue to communicate about Washington Avenue to the public, residents, and businesses.