Mayor Parker Wants to Deploy Speed Cameras All Over Philadelphia

Plus, it's hard to believe it, but the University of the Arts just made things even worse.

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker, who wants to install many, many speed cameras in Philadelphia

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker, who wants to install many, many speed cameras in Philadelphia (photo via City of Philadelphia)

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Mayor Parker Wants to Deploy Speed Cameras All Over Philadelphia

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker has had enough of your bad driving. Her solution? To install speed cameras all over Philadelphia.

There are currently just 10 speed cameras in Philadelphia, all of them along Roosevelt Boulevard, which has been called one of the most dangerous roads in the United States. The Roosevelt Boulevard speed cameras went into action in August 2020, and are responsible for issuing hundreds of thousands of violations to drivers each year, including scores to drivers clocked at over 100 miles per hour.

And now, the Parker administration has released a report calling for the installation of speed cameras along several other roadways. The city wants to install speed cameras up and down Broad Street, from where Montgomery County becomes Philadelphia in the north all the way down into the deepest parts of South Philadelphia. The city also wants speed cameras on Allegheny Avenue, Chestnut and Walnut streets, parts of Baltimore, Frankford, and Hunting Park avenues, and on Route 291 in Southwest Philadelphia.

“Automated speed enforcement has been extraordinarily successful in saving the lives of pedestrians and motorists on Roosevelt Boulevard,” Parker’s deputy managing director Mike Carroll said in a statement on Friday. “We’re looking to bring that same lifesaving technology to Broad Street, which has the city’s highest level of traffic deaths and serious injuries.”

City Council needs to act before any of this can happen. But a vote on the Broad Street speed cameras could come this month. And if that happens, expect to start seeing violations in the mail later this year.

University of the Arts Makes Things Even Worse

As I told you yesterday, there are far more questions than answers that linger over the sudden and unexpected announcement that the University of the Arts is closing this Friday, leaving faculty and staff unemployed and students without a school. We thought that some of those questions might be answered on Monday at 4 p.m., when the University of the Arts was scheduled to host a town hall about the big mess.

A huge number of faculty, staff, alumni and students signed on for the virtual town hall and awaited its start. But just minutes before the scheduled start time, the school sent out an alert that it had canceled the town hall. “As the situation continues to unfold rapidly, we cannot adequately answer your questions today,” the University of the Arts wrote in its message. As an alternative, the school offered a Google form for question submission. How nice.

Protests erupted on Broad Street outside of the University of the Arts. But still, few answers.

By the Numbers

$16,272: Funds raised since Monday morning on GoFundMe to support UARTS faculty and staff in light of the school’s sudden closure.

$1,000: Maximum tuition many families in Pennsylvania could pay for college per semester if Governor Josh Shapiro has his way. But some legislators aren’t too fond of Shapiro’s plan. And it would only apply to students who pick a major that applies to an “in-demand occupation.” So much for your dreams of studying philosophy.

5: Years that Verizon is allowed to continue operating in Philly now that City Council just extended the corporation’s franchise agreement. Comcast used to be the only game in town until the city granted Verizon permission to provide cable and internet services back in 2009.

Local Talent

Are you the kind of person who loves to sing in the shower? Are you looking for something new and different to do this week? Might I suggest Wednesday night’s Fishtown Choir gathering at Johnny Brenda’s. This is an impromptu bar choir that travels around to different venues. You show up. You have some drinks and “rehearse.” And then you belt your heart out along with all the other people there. This week’s lineup includes the Cranberries, and I, for one, can’t help but sing along as loud as I can whenever “Zombie” comes on the radio. More details on this week’s meetup here.

Ed. Note: A previous version of this article mischaracterized the nature of the city’s franchise agreement with Verizon.