It may surprise many people but in one survey by a rental car company, Philadelphia ranked number 4 among best cities to drive in the United States. They looked at statistics related to fatalities per number of residents, the number of DUIs recorded in the city, and the number of uninsured drivers. Regarding insurance, only 7.6 percent of drivers were found to be driving without insurance.
The other areas that ranked ahead of Philadelphia were Chicago, Fort Worth, Texas and Charlotte, North Carolina. Some of the cities that Philadelphia beat out were New York City, Denver, Colorado, Columbus, Ohio and the cities of San Antonio, and Houston, Texas.
In the scoring section of the survey, Philadelphia scored 300 out of 500. The condition of Philadelphia roads actually brought the score down a bit. Something else that brought the city’s score down is the well-known and notoriously dangerous Roosevelt Boulevard.
Areas in the City That Need Help
The Roosevelt Boulevard is a sprawling 11-mile road that can have up to 12 lanes in some areas. The road was originally conceived as a way to connect the rural Northeast part of the city with the rest of the city when it was built in the early 1900s. It had very little traffic on it until about the 1930s and 1940s, when the Northeast became the very populated neighborhood it is today. The city added more and more lanes to accommodate the traffic. What was originally thought to be a beautiful scenic and rural roadway became a busy thoroughfare serving about one hundred thousand trips per day.
Today, the Roosevelt Boulevard has been associated with multiple pedestrian fatalities, especially at night since pedestrians must cross up to four separate roadways in some areas to fully clear the Boulevard, as it is known. Overall about ten motorists and pedestrians die each year in crashes on the Roosevelt Boulevard. Additionally, biking on the Roosevelt Boulevard is not advised given the changing lanes and traffic patterns that are constantly changing on the roadway. City planners are coming up with new ideas to make the roadway safer, but it will take time and money.
Aside from the Roosevelt Boulevard, Philadelphia is considered car-friendly city and that is likely one of the reasons why it ranked so high. Visibility is good in the evening hours in Center City and there are multiple highways to bring motorists from one end of the city to another. The grid system is fairly easy to grasp and once drivers learn the major highways and other thoroughfare, getting a picture of the city in the driver’s mind is not so difficult.