Put Safety Over Speed in Lincoln Drive “Restoration”


This week, the Kenney administration announced a “restoration project” on Lincoln Drive, which primarily consists of repaving the existing roadway.

We oppose the Kenney administration’s plan in its current form, which only doubles down on the dangerous status quo rather than making the critical design changes needed to fulfill Mayor Kenney’s Vision Zero campaign pledge.

The City lists Lincoln Drive as one of Philadelphia’s most dangerous roads. On a stretch less than one mile, there have been seven severe injuries and four fatalities in the last 5 years. Evidence of these crashes and many others are obvious from the mangled guard rails and bumpers on the side of the road. On rainy days, experience has taught tow truck drivers to sit on side streets near Lincoln Drive, awaiting their next call.

“Repaving Lincoln Drive with no plan for serious design changes is like putting a bandaid on an open gash,” said Dena Driscoll, co-chair of 5th Square.

With two travel lanes in each direction, the design of the road encourages reckless behavior. The speed limit is 25 mph, though cars often travel double that. We propose that the roadway be narrowed to one  lane in each direction, to prevent dangerous passing, with additional traffic calming measures to reduce speeding.

As safety upgrades in Philadelphia tend to only come during the repaving cycle, we implore the city not to miss this once-in-a-decade opportunity to  prioritize people’s safety over speed on Lincoln Drive.