Take Out the Parasol and Get Ready for An Evening Paseo

Thursday, February 16, 2012

by Liz Spikol

It could be the only neighborhood improvement project that doesn't spur community dissent. Last night, West Philly residents gathered to look at plans for a pedestrian plaza at the intersection of 48th Street, Florence and Baltimore Ave. It's an incredibly irritating intersection where drivers never know who has the right of way and pedestrians stare, bewildered, at crosswalks that seem intended for someone else. Combine that with the unprotected trolley stops and the bike lanes that are often traveled in wrong directions, and you have a bit of a clusterflake (as complex as a snowflake, but less pretty).

The answer, at least temporarily? A people-pleasing plaza demarcated by a painted street, perhaps some planters, and people strolling happily through a farmer's market or neighborhood concert rather than cursing and jaywalking (though it's still Philly, so let's not get ahead of ourselves).

Part of the city's Pedestrian Plaza Program, the upcoming transformation of the intersection was submitted by University City District (UCD) and was one of just four proposals that got the nod....

Link to full article and photos.