terra, not terror

sharing ideas about a simpler way to live

Philadelphia March 8, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — terra @ 8:57 am

Philadelphia_SkylineI was in Philadelphia this week, and I wanted to share a little about this wonderful city. Philadelphia is a beautiful city with some of our country’s best historical monuments. I was able to walk through Independence Square and see the building that the Liberty Bell is in. I’ve been to the Liberty Bell before, and didn’t have a lot of time for tourist activities, unfortunately. I noticed a lot of environmentally-friendly elements in Philadelphia.

Most people walk, and for good reason. The streets downtown are all 3 lanes wide, and all one-way. One lane is reserved for parallel parking, so there are only 2 lanes to drive in – aggressively!

I saw a lot of people walking, but Philly also has a great train system, and buses, which a lot of commuters take advantage of. It seemed like such a healthy atmosphere because everyone walks.

If you do have to drive, many people use PhillyCarShare, a “nonprofit organization that seeks to maximize the economic, environmental, and social benefits of reduced automobile dependence.”

I love trains! I took a shuttle to my hotel, and it took about an hour to dodge and weave through traffic. On the way back to the airport, I took the train, and it took 1/2 a hour. The train to the airport picks up just blocks from Independence Square.

People who weren’t walking, taking public transportation, or car sharing were riding bikes! Lots of bikes weaving in and out of cars and buses, and zipping down sidewalks. Philly is relatively flat, so bike-riding is convenient. Even business people had their backpacks, helmets, and bikes.

Most of the shops were locally owned, non-chain stores. That was fantastic! It really added to the uniqueness of the city.

My favorite people on this trip were the guys in the Detroit airport who escort people around in wheelchairs. They really put their heart into their job and took an interest in the people they were helping.

 

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