New Safety Improvements Coming to Cobbs Creek Parkway


Monday, October 19, 2020


New Safety Improvements Coming to Cobbs Creek Parkway

At a virtual stakeholder meeting hosted by Cobbs Creek Community Environmental Center last Thursday, PennDOT and the Philadelphia Streets Department shared some promising plans to improve safety along Cobbs Creek Parkway.

Their current roadway improvement plan includes the immediate installation of the following features along Cobbs Creek Parkway and N 63rd St. from 58th St. north to Girard Ave:

  • Resurfacing and pavement marking
  • Lane width reduction from 12 feet to 11 feet
  • Centerline rumble strips
  • Lane separator curb and delineators on center median - to prevent median passing
  • Pavement markings: speed limits, "slow for pedestrian"
  • New warning signage installed from Delancey St. to Woodland Ave.

The following features are scheduled for 2021:

  • 58th St. south to Woodland Ave. will get the same treatments as above plus resurfacing with a high friction surface.
  • Resurfacing of a small section currently undergoing work by PGW: 61st St. to Ellsworth Ave. 

Lou Belmonte, the Assistant District Executive of PennDOT District 6, added that with community support and in conjunction with the Philadelphia Streets Department, PennDOT is “open to piloting the use of speed tables” at a sampling of locations to be determined along Cobbs Creek Parkway. Kasim Ali from the Philadelphia Streets Department added that these speed tables would be installed very soon -- either this fall or next spring.

PennDOT also announced that they hired a consultant to redesign the whole guide rail system along Cobbs Creek Parkway and that they expect to release a new 'guide rail concept' in the next few months. This has been funded through an Automated Red Light Enforcement (ARLE) Grant of $1.5 million for guide rail improvements by 2022.

Beyond this, PennDOT also announced in the long-term, Cobbs Creek Parkway is receiving a $6 million highway improvement project which starts its design phase this month. This will cover nearly the entire length of the parkway from Spruce St. down to Woodland Ave. Mr. Belmonte said, “we intend to identify and prioritize spot improvements and get to construction ASAP.”

Some of the potential improvements mentioned were:

  • Traffic signal improvements
  • Pedestrian countdown signal heads
  • Roundabout at Spruce Street / Marshall Road
  • Pedestrian bump outs
  • Median treatments
  • Permanent raised crosswalks

Inspector Derrick Wood, Commanding Officer of Southwest Police Division, also committed to have the truck enforcement unit of the Philadelphia Police Department cite trucks on Cobbs Creek Parkway.

We here at 5th Square, Cobbs Creek Neighbors Association, and the rest of our petition co-signers, are thrilled to hear this commitment to robust and immediate safety measures by PennDOT and the Streets Department.

While we wish these improvements had come sooner to avert the recent tragedies on this roadway, but we are heartened to hear that our concerns are being heard.

We want to acknowledge the tireless work and advocacy of the officials at the meeting who made these improvements possible:

  • Councilmember Jamie Gauthier
  • State Representative Joanna McClinton
  • State Senator Anthony Hardy Williams
  • Register of Wills Tracey Gordon

We also thank Alicia Burbage at the Cobbs Creek Environmental Center for organizing the meeting.