Advocacy & Safety - Night Cycling in Philadelphia
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08-13-10, 08:38 AM
I just moved to Philadelphia (I'm living at 5th and Poplar, if you know the area) and I have a job downtown at 2nd and Chestnut. I have been riding my bike to work during the day, but eventually I'm going to have a night shift from about 5:30pm to 12:45am, which means I'll be riding home at around one in the morning. I've been living in a college town for the past 4 years, so I'm used to a very safe environment. I don't live in a bad neighborhood (although I do live close to one), but I also want to be safe and not get attacked/get my bike stolen. I always wear a helmet, and I have good lights on the front and back of my bike, but I was hoping that someone who lives in a city could give me some advice on whether I should just take a taxi.
08-14-10, 07:05 PM
Just ride and don't be so paranoid. The area about which you speak isn't at all seedy. Being a large city means that you will see citizens and visitors of all shapes, sizes, colors, and persuasions, but that doesn't make the area dangerous.
It's likely at a late hour, you won't encounter a soul.
Enjoy your commute.
08-14-10, 10:25 PM
Philly here too. Can you get to Delaware Ave from Poplar? I would go straight down Delaware Ave (the bike lanes are great on it) to Dock St, then over to 2nd & Chestnut.
08-14-10, 10:37 PM
This is an extremely easy and fast commute...that's the good news. The bad news is the Old City area is actually brutal on bike thefts and mischief. I had a pump stolen off of my bike at 2nd and Chestnut...right outside Khyber...and you're going to be dealing with a lot of drunks and rude, loud, drugged out club schmucks during those hours. Old City is rapidly becoming like South Street was 10 years ago, a mixture of frat boy and ghetto clubs and bars.
I would recommend parking the bike closer to market or near the parks. I also wonder if you need to take a cab as it's about a 30 minute walk or a 5 minute ride on the Market Frankford El...which runs all night as a bus.
08-15-10, 08:51 AM
I wouldn't worry about it. Just get good lights/reflecors & you'll be fine. You've got a few alternate routes to take, so try them all, see which one(s) work best for you. I wouldn't take a taxi at that hour, such a waste..... I'd take the bus instead if it was really pouring out or really really bad weather..... The 57 runs all night I think....
08-16-10, 08:59 AM
Thanks. I've been checking the scene late at night and it is pretty hectic. Lots of crazy drunks, and I don't want to take a chance that my bike could get stolen (or, since its locked up very well, damaged in a fit of pique). Busing sounds like an excellent idea, so thanks for the info as to which bus to take.
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