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Philly’s Art Scene and Where to Park

When you think of Philadelphia’s art scene, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? If it’s jogging up the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s steps while doing your best Rocky impression, you’re not quite right — but location-wise, you’re pretty close.

Think about it for a second: How long can you walk down a city block without being reminded that Philly has a robust art scene? If the countless murals weren’t enough of a reminder, just take a stroll down the Benjamin Franklin Parkway where these two gems are:

Art Museum

1. The Philadelphia Museum of Art
Arguably the city’s most famous and noticeable landmark, the Philadelphia Museum of Art boasts a world-renowned art collection of more than 227,000 pieces.

In fact, to make things even more enticing for visitors, the Museum of Art offers a Pay What You Wish entry fee on the first Sunday of every month and on Wednesdays from 5 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.

 

barnes-foundation-gallery-rkennedy-900vp.jpg2. The Barnes Foundation

If you’re a fan of the arts, you may have collected a few nice pieces over the years, right? No offense, but the Barnes Collection will probably put it to shame.

Don’t be so hard on yourself though. It’s hard to compete with 3,000 masterpieces, including 181 Renoirs, 69 Cézannes, 59 Matisses, 46 Picassos, 16 Modigli­anis, seven Van Goghs and much more.

By the way: On the first Sunday of each month, the Barnes Foundation offers free admission!  Plan your trip ahead and get all the details here.

Now before heading to the Parkway to gaze at all the masterpieces, make sure you’re getting a cheap and convenient parking spot. Luckily we have two locations within close walking distance. Check out the locations below and get at us on Twitter or Facebook with any questions!

Gateway Parking Garage

Rates:

  • Up to 20 Minutes – $3.00
  • Each Additional 20 Minutes (or portion)  – $3.00
  • Up to 10 hours – $18.00
  • Over 10 hours – $22.00

Specials:

  • Weekend Rate – (Saturday and Sunday, must exit by Monday at 9 a.m.) – $7.00 per day

19th & Callowhill Lot

Rates:

  • Up to 1 hour – $6.00
  • Up to 2 hours – $11.00
  • Up to 12 hours – $17.00

Specials:

  • Weekends – $12.00 (Flat Rate Per Day)
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#TBT: The Terrible Tow

#TBT The Terrible TowTow trucks: Probably not the most popular topic of conversation among motorists, but believe it or not, they have quite a history. In fact, there’s actually a Towing Hall of Fame and Museum down in Chattanooga, TN.

Anyway, let’s get back to Philly. Back in the early 1900s tow trucks were actually tow trailers and were in use throughout the city. But if you compare the picture to the left with one of our current tow trucks, you can see there’s definitely been upgrades over the years.

Nowadays in the city, you’ve probably seen our tow trucks every so often. If you’ve been towed, here’s what to do to get back behind the wheel in three steps:

  1. Call 1-888-591-3636 to confirm your vehicle has been towed. We will be able to tell you where your vehicle was taken.
  2. After confirming where your vehicle is located you must pay all outstanding tickets as well as tow and storage fees, plus all outstanding tickets and fees on any previously owned vehicles. These payments can be made at the Parking Violations Branch at 913 Filbert Street, near the bus station, or the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA) Impoundment Lot at 2501 Weccacoe Avenue, off Columbus Boulevard.
  3. After making all outstanding payments, go to the impoundment lot where your vehicle is located. You can find a full list of our Impound Lots here. Upon arriving, you must present the following documents to our Impoundment Lot staff:
  • Your valid driver’s license
  • Proof of current insurance for the vehicle
  • Current vehicle registration
  • Cashier’s receipt(s) along with the accompanying Bureau of Administrative Adjudication (BAA)/Parking Violations Branch (PVB) Release Authorization for payment and/or adjudication of the tow and storage charges
  • Release authorization from the Philadelphia Traffic Court (only applies to vehicles impounded through Live Stop)
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What to Do if You’re Booted—And How to Avoid It in the Future

bootMost boots are meant for walking, but if you’ve been the recipient of one of our yellow boots, that means you have at least three or more unpaid parking or red light camera tickets.

In the long run the best way to avoid getting the boot is to not ignore your tickets.

Here’s the scoop: After you receive a parking ticket, you have the option to either pay or dispute it. But if you wait too long to pay or dispute your tickets, you could receive up to $65 in late fees to boot (no pun intended).

For the complete run-down on what happens to a ticket that’s just flat-out ignored, go here.

Now let’s get back to the boot. Let’s say you do have three or more unpaid parking or red light camera tickets and you come back to your car only to see a big ol’ yellow boot latched to it. Here’s what you need to do:

Pay the Outstanding Tickets and Boot Fee

Before a boot can taken off your vehicle, all outstanding tickets and a $150 boot fee must be paid. In this case, calling 1-888-591-3636 and pressing 2 after hearing the language options is the quickest way to make the payment. However, you also have the option to pay all outstanding tickets and the boot fee online.

Once payment is received, our booting crew will be notified to remove the boot from your car.

Have you been given the boot and have more questions? Let’s hear them on Twitter and Facebook!

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Mother’s Day in Philly: What to do and Where to Park

momdayphillyWhen you think of Philadelphia’s history, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Being the first capital of the United States? Betsy Ross knitting the first American flag on Arch Street? Or how about the signing of the Declaration of Independence?

You get the point — Philadelphia’s history is filled with many firsts for the United States. The list goes on and on, but one piece of Philadelphia’s history tends to go unnoticed: Mother’s Day.

In 1908, a Philadelphian named Anna Marie Jarvis held the first ceremony to honor not only her mother, but all mothers around the world. Following this first ceremony, Jarvis tirelessly lead efforts to recognize Mother’s Day as an official holiday. After six years, Jarvis’s efforts paid off when President Woodrow Wilson  declared Mother’s Day an official holiday in 1914.

Now, here we are in present-day Philadelphia for the 102st Mother’s Day. Aside from continuing to be any history buff’s dream, it’s also the perfect setting for treating the mother in your life to brunch, dinner or day out in the city. In fact, Visit Philadelphia offers some great ideas for your day out with mom. Check them out here.

Whether you’re wining and dining in Center City, or just taking a midday stroll through Old City, we can help you and your mom find convenient parking. After deciding how to spend your Mother’s Day, check which one of our garages best suites you, or feel free to use our parking locator!

Happy Mother’s Day!

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#TBT: America’s First Multi-Storey Parking Garage

Hotel Lasalle GarageNowadays if you’re parking in a city, you can’t turn a corner without seeing a parking garage, right?

Believe it or not, parking garages weren’t always a thing, especially during the early years of automobiles. That all changed in 1918 with the Hotel La Salle Garage in Chicago.

Considered the first multi-storey parking garage in the U.S., the Hotel La Salle Garage set the stage for off-street parking convenience.

The idea was simple: Provide customers with a conveniently safe place to park their cars as streets became too crowded with vehicles. At the time, this concept was unheard of, but that’s exactly what the owners of  Hotel La Salle did after hiring architects Holabird and Roche.

Sadly, after 87 years of service under its belt, the Hotel La Salle Garage was demolished in 2005. Attempts were made to preserve the garage as a landmark, but they never came to fruition.

Now let’s fast forward to 2016: Try turning a city corner without seeing a parking garage; you won’t have much luck. In fact,  some parking garages will even do all the parking for you!

So the next time you’re parking in a garage, remember that it all started with the Hotel La Salle Garage.

Psst: While you’re here, take a look at the discounts offered at our garages

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Parking Fails: Volume IX

Parking: Just like riding a bike or throwing a baseball, you either can do it well or you can’t do it at all. Whether it’s on the street, in a parking lot or garage, the shortfalls in parking are still alive and well, as you’ll see below. If you’ve missed our previous volumes, check them out here.

Parking Fail # 25Parking Fail # 1

No bad park job goes unpunished — at least not in this parking lot.

Let this be yet another reminder that the painted lines are there for a reason. And if you take up two parking spots in a grocery store parking lot, people tend to cleverly send a message.

 

 

Parking Fail # 26Parking Fail # 2

Okay, so there’s no way the driver knew this was going to happen, but it’s still a parking fail because, why not?

It figures. This guy parks in a garage to avoid the snow and ice, but that’s exactly what he got. Hopefully his defroster is up to snuff. Otherwise, he might have to use a flamethrower to wiggle his way out of there.

Also, where is this parking garage? At the top of Mount Everest?

 

Parking Fail # 27Parking Fail # 3

Good news, honey! I’ve converted our Ford Focus into a monorail!

At least that’s the only rationale we could think of for this one. Or maybe this guy was making a submittal for Elon Musk’s Hyperloop concept. Either way, this guy should just stick to driving on the road, which apparently he’s already having issues with.

Remember: If you see an illegally parked car in an area that we patrol, let us know by calling our communications line at 215-683-9775.

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#TBT: Back to North Philly

#TBT North Philly Neighborhood lot 2About a year ago, we went back to the 1990s to look at the groundbreaking ceremony of our North Philly neighborhood lot. We know: The black and white pictures make you think they’re from the ‘50s, but don’t be fooled.

Anyway, this month we’re taking another look at the groundbreaking ceremony, only this time around the attendees, which included State Representative Dwight Evans; PPA Chairman Herman Wooden; State Senator Alison Schwartz; and  former Mayor of Philadelphia Wilson Goode, got their hands dirty as they broke ground for the construction project.

After construction was complete at 7100 Ogontz Avenue, the lot served the surrounding business district for nearly five years before being redeveloped. Now, instead of parking, you can gas up your car at M & J Market.

Speaking of redevelopment, if you haven’t heard yet, we’re completely revamping our 8th & Filbert Garage. To take a look the progress, check out the Transformation Series.

Also, if you commute to Philly by car on a daily basis, make sure you’re in the know on our Early Bird parking specials and discounted garage rates!

Any questions? Let’s hear them on Twitter or Facebook!

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Guest Post: The Latest Distracted Driving Stats

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By: Fay Niselbaum

It only takes a single moment of inattention for a car accident to occur. Unfortunately, a society that is too busy has led to all too many people attempting to do other things while they’re behind the wheel. Simply reaching for something in the car can be a distraction, especially if you have to take your eyes off the wheel to do it.

Personal grooming, changing the station on the radio and other tasks all seem perfectly reasonable right up until they lead to accidents. Cell phones”, New York traffic offense attorney Zev Goldstein tells me, “unfortunately create an even more potent distraction: texting, making phone calls and surfing the web all pull drivers’ eyes off the road and cause serious problems and have reached epidemic levels in recent years”.

Texting and Driving: The Statistics

Six billion text messages are sent in the U.S. every day. Unfortunately, all too many of those are sent while the sender is operating a motor vehicle. While almost 90 percent of adults admit that they know texting and driving is dangerous, 49 percent admit to occasionally engaging in texting while driving.

Even more will use their cell phone while driving about 82 percent of adults between the ages of 25 and 39. Taking their eyes off of the road for even that brief period of time can be dangerous, especially with modern smart phones, which require the user to look down at the screen in order to dial. Unfortunately, the number of people surfing the web while driving is also increasing: in 2015, 29 percent of drivers admitted to using the internet while behind the wheel. As navigation apps have become more common, people have become more likely to check them while actively driving instead of pulling over.

Statistics by Age and Gender

Unfortunately, young drivers are more likely than their older peers to be distracted while behind the wheel of the car. When drivers under the age of 20 are involved in fatal crashes, 16 percent of them were reported to be distracted. Drivers under the age of 25 are also two to three times more likely to send emails and read and answer text messages.

When it comes to using phones and driving, women and men tend to view their distracted driving habits the same way. They’re equally likely to:

  •      Answer phone calls (a much more common activity than actively making phone calls)
  •      Check incoming text messages
  •      Send text messages

Women, however, are more likely to engage in distracted driving behavior like interacting with children in the back seat and taking care of personal grooming.

Distracted Driving: Accident Statistics

In 2015, nearly 2.3 million motor vehicle accidents leading to serious injury occurred between January and June alone. Nearly 19,000 people were killed in similar accidents.

Drivers on their cell phones are more than 20 times more likely to be involved in accidents than drivers who aren’t distracted, and one in four car crashes involved a distracted driver on a cell phone.

That’s an incredible number of lives that could have been saved simply by people concentrating on driving while behind the wheel of a car.

In general, texting drivers take their eyes off of the road for about five seconds. Unfortunately, it’s only safe for a driver to look away for around two seconds.

Texting while driving is the new driving under the influence (DUI). Many states are cracking down on cell phone use while behind the wheel, insisting that drivers pay attention to the most critical task — driving — before turning back to their cell phones. These measures are aimed at preventing accidents and making the roads safer for everyone.

Note: Fay Niselbaum is a content specialist at The Law Office of Zev Goldstein PLLC. Fay loves cooking, blogging, and spending time with her family.

PHOTO CREDIT:  Andrea Rotter via Flickr

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Parking Fails: Volume VIII

With more than 200 million drivers on  the road in the U.S. alone, you can bet your bottom dollar that you’ll see a good amount of comedy on the road, or in these cases, off the road.

Parking Fail # 22Parking Fail # 1

Alright, so there’s nothing necessarily wrong with this park job. But this guy made the mistake of parking while having overly-clever friends with too much time on their hands.

Also: hopefully customers were shopping pretty lightly that day.


Parking Fail # 2

Parking Fail # 23Either the high tide was higher than normal that day, or the driver was just flat out stupid.

If the driver ever had a chance of saving his car and dignity, luckily it looks like they had a loyal group of friends lending a hand.

Just remember folks: If you’re going to a beach that has a parking lot, use it.

 

Parking Fail # 3

Parking Fail # 24

A+ for execution, F- for following directions.

Looks like the Tetris world champion has a challenger on their hands.  

Big question though: How’d they get out? If they took the Austin Powers route, that’s a hefty repair bill that’ll need to be paid to the other drivers.

 

Remember: If you see a parking fail in an area that we patrol, call our communications line at 215-683-9775 and we’ll send someone out to take a look!

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52nd Street Meter Mural Project

IMG_7408It’s no secret that Philadelphia has a robust art scene. Think about it: We have the Philadelphia Art Museum, the Barnes Foundation and let’s not forget the countless murals scattered throughout the city.

Now, if you head down to 52nd Street, you’ll notice a different kind of mural — meter murals that is.

Here’s the scoop: A few months ago The Enterprise Center Community Development Corporation  (TEC-CDC) encouraged local artists, especially those with a West Philly connection (where 52nd Street is located), to give some old parking meters a much-needed facelift. After many proposals were submitted, 10 artists were chosen to spruce up the meters, and they didn’t disappoint.

Believe it or not, meter murals are becoming a thing in cities across the U.S. Most recently Dallas, TX and Wheeling, WV began sprucing up their parking meters, leaving parkers pleasantly surprised. We know: who’da thunk parking could be fun, right?

Anyway, let’s get back to 52nd Street.

Sure, sprucing up old parking meters is a cool idea, but for 52nd Street, it was more than that.

In an interview with PhillyVoice, Akeem Dixon, 52nd Street corridor manager for the TEC-CDC says, “Most importantly, this is a job creator. People will get paid for their artistic ability. This helps revitalize a community with an art installation, and it acts as a community engagement tool.”

Truer words have never been spoken. For more information on the great work done by  TEC-CDC, check out their website here, or give them a shout on Twitter.

PSST—by the way, ya still gotta feed these meters. 🙂

20151109_135619_resized (1) IMG_7367 IMG_7405 MM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Featured Photo Credit: MINDY CHRISTIAN/YORKARTS

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