It’s that time of the year when the weather is amazing, the Phillies season is in full throttle, and Philadelphia welcomes back the Wawa Welcome America festival! The weeklong festival is FREE for the public to enjoy great music, free hoagies, and (of course) an elaborate fireworks show.
What you need to know:
Between hosting the NFL Draft in 2017 and celebrating the Eagles Super Bowl victory in 2018, Philadelphia knows how to host an event. But this party isn’t just the average gathering—it’s a time to celebrate our culture, history, and the birth of our country.
This week-long festival begins June 29 with free multicultural community events celebrating America’s birthday by giving citizens the opportunity to learn about our nation’s history. Several museums, including the American Swedish Historical Museum and the Independence Seaport Museum, are hosting Free Museum Day—view the whole list here.
On July 4, music icon and actress Jennifer Hudson and pop-star Meghan Trainor will perform some of their biggest hits in the heart of Philadelphia, along with the famous Philly Pops Big Band. The show starts at 7 p.m. on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, and between the food trucks, live music, and fireworks show, you don’t want to miss it.
Since more than 25,000 people are expected to attend the festival, it’s important to plan ahead, especially when it comes to parking. Luckily, we have you covered with multiple options.
If you plan on parking on the street, our meterUP app is the easiest way to pay for parking in Philadelphia. No change? No problem! Use meterUP to pay with your credit card and enjoy convenient perks like adding or stopping time for your parking session straight from your smartphone. The meterUP app provides customized parking notifications to your phone that give you a heads up when your meter is about to expire. Having the information you need in the palm of your hands not only provides you reassurance on your vehicle, but it also allows you to focus on having fun at the festival.
If you would rather park your car at our off-street parking facilities, check out our locations and rates below — and don’t forget to take note of road closures and parking restrictions during the festivities.
Parking facilities near Wawa Welcome America:
1503-11 Arch St.
Philadelphia, PA 19102
- Up to a ½ hour: $6.00
- Up to 1 hour: $13.00
- Up to 1 ½ hours: $19.00
- Up to 2 hours: $25.00
- Up to 12 hours: $27.00
- Up to 24 hours: $29.00
- Weekends: $11.00 (flat rate per day)
1540 Vine St.
Philadelphia, PA 19102
- Up to 20 minutes: $3.00
- Each additional 20 minutes (or portion): $3.00
- Up to 10 hours: $16.00
- Over 10 hours: $20.00
- Evening Rate (enter after 5 p.m., exit by 9 a.m.): $5.00
- Weekend Rate (flat rate per day): $7.00
1901 Callowhill St.
Philadelphia, PA 19130
- Up to 1 hour: $6.00
- Up to 2 hours: $11.00
- Up to 12 hours: $17.00
- Up to 24 hours: $20.00
- Early Bird (enter before 9 a.m., exit by 6 p.m.) Monday through Friday: $11.00
- Weekends: $12.00 (flat rate per day)
- Evening (enter after 5 p.m., exit by 9 a.m.): $9.00
Photo by R. Myers for Visit Philadelphia
In the second episode of the PPA Podcast, “The Petri Dish,” our Philadelphia International Airport Parking Operations is the main discussion topic. PPA Executive Director, Scott Petri, sits down with members of our airport operations staff, Frank Ragozzino and Pam Evans, to discuss the convenience provided to the traveling public by our airport parking facilities.
On June 25th, 2019, the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA) was awarded the Technology Innovation for Citizens Award by GovTech Magazine for reintroducing its mobile payment application, meterUP. In particular, this award is reserved for government entities that have utilized technology to improve service delivery, user experience and customer satisfaction.
The PPA relaunched it’s meterUP mobile payment application in December 2017. Since then, meterUP’s popularity has continued with over three-hundred thousand downloads and three million parking transactions being completed. MeterUP’s popularity and convenience is also indicated by 4.8 out of 5 rating on iOS and Google Play app stores.
In addition to the convenience of remotely paying all on-street parking meters in Philadelphia, meterUP allows a user to end their parking session early while only charging them for the time they are parked. This feature is not available in any other first class city and is considered one of the most popular features among our meterUP customers.
Additional meterUP Information:
PHILADELPHIA (June 24, 2019) – A new study released today quantifies for the first time the economic cost of Philadelphia’s growing problem of traffic congestion.
The report, completed by Philadelphia-based Econsult Solutions, Inc., finds that congestion within the Center City street grid alone impacts Philadelphians in the following ways:
- 7 million annual hours lost for bus and car passengers sitting in traffic
- $152 million in annual time value and transportation cost associated with those delays – a $260 annual tax on each Philadelphia household
- $21 million in additional SEPTA bus operating costs associated with maintaining the same level of service at slower speeds
- 15,700 potential jobs and $1.08 billion potential earnings foregone associated with lost productivity – four Comcast Towers worth of unrealized workers
- $58 million foregone in City and School District tax revenue associated with lower productivity and earnings – or $100 per household
The report notes that congestion is a signal of success, with population and job growth increasing demand for travel across the city. Philadelphia has grown by more than 71,000 jobs since 2010, and grew more than 15,000 jobs in 2018 alone. However, if not controlled congestion threatens to short-circuit economic growth by reducing the attractiveness of Philadelphia as a place to live and do business. In effect, traffic puts a ceiling on the city’s growth potential.
The report’s release comes amidst a significant campaign by the City of Philadelphia, in partnership with SEPTA and the Philadelphia Parking Authority, to better manage congestion by strictly enforcing traffic violations in Center City.
“Congestion in Philadelphia is negatively impacting the quality of bus service, which in turn is contributing to ridership loss,” said SEPTA General Manager Jeffrey D. Knueppel. “Less bus ridership adds even more cars to city streets, further exacerbating the congestion problem. SEPTA is committed to working with the city to breaking this vicious cycle, and this report helps to make clear just how important it is to the future of the city and region that we are successful in this effort.”
As the city has grown, so too has the demand for use of street space. This has created an impetus for thoughtfully managing the public right of way.
“The city has seen an increase in the number of pedestrians, transit riders, bikers, and drivers of all types that share its colonial street grid,” said Michael A. Carroll, City of Philadelphia Deputy Managing Director of the Office of Transportation, Infrastructure, and Sustainability. “At the same time, the emergence of ride-sharing and online shopping with delivery has put new kinds of demand on the grid. The resulting congestion impacts the lives of residents throughout the city, costing them valuable time and limiting their ability to reliably access employment and other opportunities.”
“As the agency tasked with regulating Uber, Lyft, and taxis as well as maintaining the flow of traffic in the city’s numerous business districts, the Philadelphia Parking Authority looks forward to working with our transportation partners to alleviate congestion, while also ensuring the safety of taxis and ride-share vehicles for the riding public,” said PPA Executive Director Scott Petri.
Petri added, “It’s troubling that our inspections of Uber and Lyft vehicles since the beginning of the year uncovered a disturbing trend of 32 percent failing inspection.”
To read the full report, please visit: https://econsultsolutions.com/philadelphia-congestion-2019/
PHILADELPHIA — Mayor Jim Kenney today continued progress toward the City’s Vision Zero goal of zero traffic deaths by 2030 by signing legislation to bring speed enforcement cameras along the 12 miles of Roosevelt Boulevard, between 9th Street and the city’s boundary with Bucks County. Cameras will be installed along this High Injury Network corridor by the end of this year.
“Today we are taking an important step to calm speeds on one of the most dangerous roads in our city,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “At the beginning of my administration, I committed to taking action on the Roosevelt Boulevard. Adding automated speed cameras on the Boulevard is one of the most effective steps that we can take towards eliminating traffic deaths.”
“The Philadelphia Parking Authority is a proud partner in Philadelphia’s Vision Zero initiative,” said PPA Executive Director Scott Petri. “With the ultimate goal of eliminating traffic deaths, we’re confident the implementation of Automated Speed Enforcement will greatly assist in curbing dangerous driving behaviors.”
“We know that speed is especially deadly for people walking and biking, and that if we can get motorists to change their behavior and slow down, we can reduce crashes and save lives,” said Councilwoman Cherelle Parker of the 9th District. “Today is a victory for anyone who wishes to travel safely on Roosevelt Boulevard.”
The Philadelphia Parking Authority will administer the speed camera program along Roosevelt Boulevard, similarly to how the PPA administers the red light camera program throughout the city.
Roadside signs will be posted to alert drivers to automated speed enforcement on the Boulevard. Once the program begins, there will be a 60-day warning period before fines are issued. During this warning period, vehicles identified as speeding will be issued a warning without a fine for the violation. After the 60-day warning period, the program will begin issuing fines.
- $100.00 – 11 to 19 MPH over the posted speed limit
- $125.00 – 20 to 29 MPH over the posted speed limit
- $150.00 – 30+ MPH over the posted speed limit
Up to three violations may be issued to a single motor vehicle within any 30-minute period. Violations do not add points to a driver’s record.
The money collected will be used to cover the program’s costs including equipment, administration, and police officers dedicated to reviewing the violations.
Remaining funds will be used for a transportation safety grants program for things such as intersection safety improvements. The aim of the program is to improve safety and reduce deaths and serious injuries resulting from speeding, not serve as a generator of revenue.
Between 2013 and 2017, there were 2,695 crashes resulting in 139 people being killed or severely injured on Roosevelt Boulevard.
Following the installation of an automated speed enforcement program, New York City reduced speeding at camera locations by 63 percent and fatal crashes by 55 percent (NYCDOT Automated Speed Enforcement Program Report 2014-2017).
For the first PPA Podcast, “The Petri Dish,” ADA Accessibility to cabs and transportation network companies (more commonly known as Uber and Lyft) is the main discussion topic. PPA Executive Director, Scott Petri, sits down with Taxi & Limousine Division directors, Bill Schmid and Christine Kirlin, to discuss the current hurdles in regulating taxicabs and transportation network companies within Philadelphia.
Guest Post by Independence Visitor Center Corporation
In many ways, the Philly PHLASH Downtown Loop™ remains one of the city’s best-kept secrets.
The service has been around since 1994, and hit its all-time high for ridership last year. Yet, there are still plenty of visitors and locals who are not aware of all that the PHLASH has to offer.
Even if your ride was among the 314,000 the PHLASH made in 2016, you probably aren’t taking advantage of everything the service has to offer. Here is our list of the top reasons to ride the PHLASH:
Top 5 Reasons to Ride the PHLASH
- Excellent Customer Service: Did you know that the Independence Visitor Center Corporation began managing the PHLASH in 2012? That means we apply our same high standards of customer service and attention to visitor needs to the transit service.
- “Park & Ride” Discount Program: For anyone driving into Philadelphia, PHLASH’s “Park & Ride” program offers a discounted rate at the following Philadelphia Parking Authority facilities for those who present a PHLASH pass:
- Stop 2, AutoPark at 2nd & Sansom Streets, 125 S. 2nd Street: $8.00
- Stops 3 & 21, AutoPark at Independence Mall, 5th & Market Streets: $11.00
- Stop 4, Parkade on 8th Street, 801 Filbert Street: $8.00
- Stop 4, AutoPark at The Gallery, 10th & Filbert Streets: $8.00
- Stop 20, AutoPark at Jefferson, 10th & Ludlow Streets: $8.00
So leave the stress of city traffic to the professionals—park your car and ride PHLASH for the day!
- Clean + Comfortable Vehicles: In 2014, the PHLASH service transitioned from using trolleys to state-of-the-art New Flyer MiDi buses, operated by Krapf’s Coaches. The buses are large, seating up to 32 passengers comfortably, with large windows for great city views. They are air conditioned, ADA compliant, made in the USA, and use the latest in clean diesel technology. The PHLASH vehicles provide such a pleasant riding experience that the PHLASH was even named one of “10 Places to Mooch Free Air Conditioning in Philadelphia” by Philadelphia Magazine!
- Exclusive Route: Like everything else about the PHLASH, its route is designed with the visitor in mind. The PHLASH travels from the Delaware River Waterfront to Fairmount Park, making 22 stops located near popular destinations and attractions, including: Penn’s Landing, the National Museum of Jewish American History, The Barnes Foundation, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Rodin Museum, the Perelman Building, Eastern State Penitentiary, The Franklin Institute, National Constitution Center, Pennsylvania Convention Center, Reading Terminal Market, the Shops at Liberty Place, the Please Touch Museum, the Philadelphia Zoo, One Liberty Observation Deck, and the brand-new Museum of the American Revolution.
The PHLASH is the ONLY public transit route that travels along Philadelphia’s iconic Benjamin Franklin Parkway, providing access to the city’s Museum District.
- FREE Rides: At just $2 per ride or $5 for an all-day pass, the PHLASH is the most affordable way to travel around the city for everyone. But for many, the PHLASH is completely free! Among the groups who can always ride PHLASH for free: SEPTA Pass and Key card holders, seniors 65 and older; and children 4 and under.
If you haven’t yet experienced the benefits of riding the PHLASH, you’re in luck because daily service for the season resumed on Thursday, March 28!
PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Fusco for the IVCC