East Falls makes it easy to be part of the national trend in decreased car use. Other transport options are taking hold and cars are getting smaller, too..
National Transportation Trends:
Car use has peaked and is now in the decline in the United States.
- The 2012 rates of vehicles and distance driven were comparable to the rates during the early-to mid-1990s.
- The vehicle miles traveled per person have dropped eight years in a row. They are now about 7.5 percent below their 2004 peak and the drop-off in driver's licenses began even earlier.
And, automakers are producing smaller cars that take up smaller amounts of space in urban areas. Along with the Smart Car, Mini Cooper, and Fiat 500, MIT designed a City Car. This tiny vehicle folds up for parking.
MIT's BIT Car will be introduced to the Car Share Program. They are not the cars of the future - they are already in Paris. Look how much space it could save!
Current landscape in Houston, TX [Source: Google Earth] Same block with comparable parking requirements for bit cars
Philadelphia Transportation Trends:
While car use is declining, people are using Car Share, public transit, and even bicycles
· The Vehicle miles traveled in Philadelphia peaked in 2005 and dropped 7.4% by 2010.
· Pennsylvania Vehicle miles traveled totals have also dropped 5.1% between 2005 and 2010
Car Share in Philadelphia
As Philadelphians continue their decreased use of the private vehicle, one option that is becoming an important means of transportation is Car Share. Car Share companies such Enterprise and Zipcar scatter rentable cars in designated spots throughout the city of Philadelphia. One shared car replaces at least 5–10 individually owned cars.
East Falls has Car Share locations:
Enterprise Car Share:
Philadelphia University, 4201 Henry Ave
Midvale Avenue Auto
2815 W Queen Ln.
Falls Center, 3300 Henry Ave
Drexel Medicine, Queen Lane
Falls Village Apartments
Alden Park Apartments
Charter Court Apartments
Couple the East Falls Car Share spots with our two Regional Rail Stations (East Falls and Queen Lane), and add the increased bike commuting, it is easy to see the future. Cars won’t disappear, but we will see fewer of them and they will take up less room.
- by Matt Skelly, EFDC
East Falls: Bikes Welcome!!
East Falls is the perfect location for people who want to bike. Whether for recreation or commuting, you can get to trails with ease...
Bike commuting is on the rise
The number of bicyclists is growing rapidly from coast to coast. The National Household Travel Survey showed that the number of trips made by bicycle in the U.S. more than doubled from 1.7 billion in 2001 to 4 billion in 2009.
According to the Bike Coalition, “Philadelphia has more people commuting by bicycle, per capita, than any of the other ten biggest cities in the United States. In 2012, the U.S. Census estimated Philadelphia’s bicycle commuting rate at 2.3%, higher than Chicago (1.6%) or New York (1.0%). Every month more people in our region are discovering the ease and fun of bicycling to work.”
East Falls is perfectly situated between the Schuylkill River and Wissahickon Creek. Both of thesewaterways have extensive bike paths.
The Schuylkill River Trail
The Schuylkill River Trail in Philadelphia is approximately 10 miles in length. Schuylkill Banks, located between the Fairmount Water Works and the South Street Bridge, was recently extended by a extraordinary boardwalk that goes from Locust Street to the South Street Bridge.
From Schuylkill Banks to East Falls, the trail is a wide paved surface suitable for rollerblading, walking, running and cycling. This section runs next to Kelly Drive and takes users past Boathouse Row. Commuters use this easy four-mile trail to get in and out of Center City.
The Schuylkill River trail connects to a trail on Martin Luther King Drive across the historic Falls Bridge. From there, it is easy access to West Philadelphia. MLK is also closed for recreation in warm weather months on the weekends.
Leaving East Falls north to Ridge Avenue, the Schuylkill trail is on sidewalk, here you can split off to the Wissahickon or continue on to Ridge Avenue through Manayunk to a towpath. From this point, the Schuylkill River trail extends over 100 miles to Pottsville, PA.
The Wissahickon is a beautiful place to enjoy nature. The Wissahickon Valley Park is a lovely, wooded valley with Wissahickon Creek running through its entire seven-mile length. The Park extends from Ridge Avenue north to Chestnut Hill. Forbidden Drive, a wide gravel road closed to automobile traffic, parallels the Creek and the Park is criss-crossed by more than 50 miles of often rugged trails.
For people who don’t have their own bikes, East Falls is looking to add an Indego Bike share
With more bike use, people depend less on cars.
- by Matt Skelly, EFDC
East Falls: come be part of the transit trend!
Nationwide, public transit is growing-
The golden age for the car is over: every year more and more Americans are choosing public transportation:
• In 2014, Americans took 10.8 billion trips on public
transportation - - the highest in 58 years.
• Since 1995, public transit ridership is up 39 percent, outpacing population growth (up 21 percent), and vehicle miles traveled, (up only 25 percent).
Philadelphians are following this national trend:
• Even with the winter weather disruptions, SEPTA set a new record for Regional Rail ridership with 36.7 million trips in FY 2014 - an increase of nearly 2 percent compared to FY 2013.
• That same year passengers took more than 330 million trips on SEPTA buses, trains and trolleys last year - the fifth highest total since 1989.
East Falls provides the connections - Conveniently located between Center City and the suburbs, East Falls gets you were you need to go:
• 61 – 9th market to Manayunk
• R – Henry Ave-Midvale and Wissahickon Transportation Center to Frankford Transportation Center
• K – Ridge Ave -Midvale to Arrott Transportation Center
The Wissahickon Transfer Station is nearby as well
Two Regional Rail stops provide access to East Falls:
• East Falls Station on the Manayunk / Norristown Line – Between Center City, East Falls, Manayunk and Norristown
• Queen Lane Station on the Chestnut Hill West – Between Center City Philadelphia and Chestnut Hill West
It is great to take public transit:
• Households near public transit drive an average of 4,400 fewer miles than households with no access to public transit
• The average household spends 17.5 cents of every dollar on transportation, and 94% of this goes towards car expenses, the largest expense after housing.
• One person with a 20-mile round trip commute who switches from driving to public transit can reduce his or her daily carbon emissions by 20 pounds, or more than 4,800 pounds in a year.
• Public transportation use in the United States reduces our nation’s carbon emissions by 37 million metric tons annually. This is equivalent to Washington, DC; New York City; Atlanta; Denver; and Los Angeles combined stopping using electricity.
Be clean and save your green - live or do business in East Falls!
- by Matt Skelly, EFDC Intern
East Falls is an Urban Village on the Schuylkill River
Nestled between the Schuylkill River and Fairmount Park’s Wissahickon Valley, East Falls offers an eclectic mix of residential and commercial opportunities. East Falls SEPTA station is served by two train lines, multiple SEPTA bus lines, and convenient access to Route 1 (Roosevelt Boulevard, City Line Avenue) and the Schuylkill Expressway, Route I-76. An estimated 60,000 regional commuters travel past East Falls along Kelly Drive daily. Prime location, historic architecture, and strong civic spirit make this community an increasingly popular destination for families, business and recreation, while trendy bars and restaurants generate a vibrant social life for visitors from surrounding Philadelphia neighborhoods.
East Falls is located just northwest of Center City Philadelphia and just a few minutes from Manayunk and Chestnut Hill communities.
From Delaware/Baltimore, South Jersey
From South (Delaware, Baltimore etc.) - Take I-95 North. Follow signs for Central Philadelphia/I- 676 west. Follow 676 West to signs for Route 76 (Schuylkill Expressway) West - (towards Valley Forge). Take 76 to Lincoln Dr/Kelly Dr Exit 340A, merge onto City Ave W, and take the exit on the left which is Ridge Avenue. Keep right at the fork to go on to Ridge Avenue. Welcome to East Falls - on-street parking is available.
From West (Reading, Lancaster, Harrisburg) - Take the PA Turnpike East to Exit 326 (old exit 24; Schuylkill Expressway). Take Schuylkill Expressway (I-76) East towards Central Philadelphia. Take 76 to Lincoln Dr/Kelly Dr Exit 340A, merge onto City Ave (over the Bridge), and take the exit on the left which is Ridge Avenue East. Welcome to East Falls – on-street parking is available.
From New York and north New Jersey
From North (New York, North Jersey) - Take NJ Turnpike to PA Turnpike/Exit 6. Take the PA Turnpike to Exit 326 (old exit 24; Schuylkill Expressway). Take Schuylkill Expressway (I-76) East towards Central Philadelphia. Take 76 to Lincoln Dr/Kelly Dr Exit 340A, merge onto City Ave W, and take the exit on the left which is Ridge Avenue. Welcome to East Falls – on-street parking is available
From Northeast/Bucks County
Take US-1 South which becomes Roosevelt Blvd. Take the Ridge Ave Exit. Turn right onto Ridge Ave. Welcome to East Falls – Parking Lot is directly ahead.
Parking convenient to the Riverfront Business District is located at the parking lot under the Twin Bridges (4100 Ridge Ave.). A 24 hour, 50 space lot with handicapped parking and zip cars that overlooks the Schuylkill River. A step away from local eateries The Trolley Car Cafe and InRiva.
Monthly parking permits are available at the EFDC office 3728A Midvale Ave. Permits are avilable for purchase at a day rate of $25/mo. and a 24 hr. rate of $45/mo.
One of the many benefits of East Falls is its convenient public transit access. In addition to the service of two SEPTA rail lines (R6 and R8), eight bus lines service the community along major arterial roads. The Wissahickon Transfer Center, located between East Falls and Manayunk, serves as a transfer point for seven additional bus lines. East Falls is a single bus ride from Center City, points in North, West, Northwest and Northeast Philadelphia, as well as suburban locales such as Plymouth Meeting, King of Prussia and Valley Forge. Look at the routes for your self and then plan your trip at www.septa.org.
East Falls’ SEPTA Regional Rail station stops are conveniently located for residents and visitors. East Falls station at Midvale Avenue and Cresson Street is served by the R6 Norristown line and the Queen Lane Station, at Midvale Avenue and Queen Lane, is served by the R8 Chestnut Hill West line. Both stations are Zone 1 stops and are approximately 15-20 minutes from Center City. These lines also link East Falls to Manayunk, Roxborough, Conshohocken, Norristown, Mount Airy and Chestnut Hill.
East Falls is easily accessible from the Schuylkill Expressway (I-76) and the Roosevelt Extension (US 1). Take Exit 340A and follow the signs for Ridge Avenue East. The Schuylkill Expressway connects to the Delaware Expressway (I-95) and the Vine Street Expressway (I-676). East Falls’ is a short car ride from points such as Philadelphia International Airport, the Sports Complex, the Benjamin Franklin Bridge, the Philadelphia Zoo, King of Prussia, the Pennsylvania Turnpike, City Line Avenue and the Roosevelt Boulevard.
Bicycle and Pedestrian Facilities
The Schuylkill River Rail along Kelly Drive is an important recreational venue that serves the entire Philadelphia region. It is a scenic recreational path for walkers, joggers, bicyclists and roller bladers that follows the curves and turns of the Schuylkill River. There is an eight mile loop trail from East Falls to the Art Museum that crosses the River at the historic Falls Bridge in East Falls. The Bridge connects to Martin Luther King Drive on the West side of the Schuylkill River. Portions of Martin Luther King Drive are closed during the day on Saturdays and Sundays from May to October to accommodate recreational activities.
East Falls has a section of the 8 mile recreation loop from the Art Museum to the Falls Bridge. It also offers a connection to some of the most scenic mountain biking trails in Pennsylvania. Extending beyond the Philadelphia Museum of Art, along both sides of the Schuylkill River and Wissahickon Creek, Fairmount Park is the largest municipally-owned park in the United States. From East Falls, you can easily connect to the Wissahickon Creek, which cuts through the Wissahickon Valley Park, an 1,800-acre, 7-mile long forested alpine gorge that empties into the Schuylkill River. There are also other bike paths and trails are within the park.
The recreational loop is paved along the Schuylkill River Trail; Forbidden Drive is gravel, and the Wisshahickon has mountain bike and horse trails. The loop guides you through the Azalea Garden, Boat House Row, beautiful views of the river and Falls Bridge as well as the sculptures along the river. It is an easy-to-moderate ride with minimal elevation. Bicycles share the path with hikers, and roller bladers.
For more information about East Falls, click below: