• Learn about the conditions that led to Frank Furness' most incredible masterworks, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts seen here, on Wednesday.
      Learn about the conditions that led to Frank Furness' most incredible masterworks, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts seen here, on Wednesday.

Philly Free Streets: Enjoyed by walkers, cyclists, beach lovers — but not drivers

    • Alaina Ewins adds to a chalk mandala at Ridge Avenue and North Broad Street. The mandala was created by the Mural Arts Program in support of Philly Free Streets.
      Alaina Ewins adds to a chalk mandala at Ridge Avenue and North Broad Street. The mandala was created by the Mural Arts Program in support of Philly Free Streets.
    • Davis Shaver pauses at Girard Avenue and Broad Street with his dog, Doc, during their bike ride at Philly Free Streets.
      Davis Shaver pauses at Girard Avenue and Broad Street with his dog, Doc, during their bike ride at Philly Free Streets.
    • Passersby stop at the median in front of the Philadelphia School District building to watch a jazz band perform during Philly Free Streets.
      Passersby stop at the median in front of the Philadelphia School District building to watch a jazz band perform during Philly Free Streets.
    • Eric Neuhaus prepares to go for a bike ride down Broad Street. He says Philly Free Streets is
      Eric Neuhaus prepares to go for a bike ride down Broad Street. He says Philly Free Streets is "a great opportunity to see the city."
    • Geffen Reinherz, 5 (left), and Skyla Car, 7, draw with chalk at Broad and Poplar Streets during Philly Free Streets.
      Geffen Reinherz, 5 (left), and Skyla Car, 7, draw with chalk at Broad and Poplar Streets during Philly Free Streets.
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Cyclists, walkers, children and dogs were happy to take over the four-lane expanse of North Broad Street during Philly Free Streets on Saturday. The event, in its third year, is a “people-powered initiative of the City of Philadelphia” to temporarily close city streets to cars and give people on foot and, typically, fewer than four wheels full access.

Inspired by the Pope’s visit to Philadelphia in 2015, this year’s event closed down Broad Street from City Hall to Germantown Avenue, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

    • Philadelphia Police Capt. Javier Rodriguez compliments Logan Miller, 5, on a monster he has drawn with chalk at Broad Street and Ridge Avenue. during Philly Free Streets
      Philadelphia Police Capt. Javier Rodriguez compliments Logan Miller, 5, on a monster he has drawn with chalk at Broad Street and Ridge Avenue. during Philly Free Streets
    • Xinyan Jiang (left) goes for a
      Xinyan Jiang (left) goes for a "test ride" on an Indego bike as Marcos Lomeli, from the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, helps her gain her footing.
    • Roy Nurse DJs outside Flambo Carribean Restaurant to draw customers in from Philly Free Streets.
      Roy Nurse DJs outside Flambo Carribean Restaurant to draw customers in from Philly Free Streets.
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Tyrone Davis, a Broad Street resident, was making the most of the the closure. “I’ve been out here since 7 a.m.,” he said. “I think I’ll stay here until 1 p.m. It’s so calm out here.”

    • Tyrone Davis sits in a chair he brought to the center of Broad Street between Fairmount Avenue and Brown Street. He lives nearby.
      Tyrone Davis sits in a chair he brought to the center of Broad Street between Fairmount Avenue and Brown Street. He lives nearby.
    • Chrissy Jones paints the face of Kadeem Gaines, 3, as Spiderman at a booth advertising The Met Philadelphia, at Broad and Poplar Streets.
      Chrissy Jones paints the face of Kadeem Gaines, 3, as Spiderman at a booth advertising The Met Philadelphia, at Broad and Poplar Streets.
    • Michelle Wu from Students Run Philly Style (far right) called Philly Free Streets
      Michelle Wu from Students Run Philly Style (far right) called Philly Free Streets "liberating" for runners.
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Families dug in at “The Beach on North Broad,” a four-day pop-up feature at Broad and Master Streets offering 50 tons of sand.

    • Axel Reinherz plays in the sand at
      Axel Reinherz plays in the sand at "The Beach on North Broad."
    • People on bikes and on foot pass in front of barriers blocking North Broad Street from vehicular traffic.
      People on bikes and on foot pass in front of barriers blocking North Broad Street from vehicular traffic.
    • Lynne Silverstein and Peter Zoltowski go for a walk down Broad Street during Philly Free Streets.
      Lynne Silverstein and Peter Zoltowski go for a walk down Broad Street during Philly Free Streets.
    • All clear for pedestrians and cyclists for Philly Free Streets.
      All clear for pedestrians and cyclists for Philly Free Streets.
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Philadelphia resident Lynne Silverstein took it all in. “When you live in the city,” she said, “you always have to compete with traffic. This is a nicer atmosphere.”

The sentiment was echoed by cyclist Eric Neuhaus. “We’re going to see everything we wouldn’t normally see in a car. It’s a great opportunity to see the city, and it’s a great day!”

About the author

Rachel Wisniewski

Rachel Wisniewski is a photojournalist based in Philadelphia. She has shot for WHYY, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Bucks County Courier Times, and more. Rachel's work can be found at http://www.rachelwisniewski.com.


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