Philadelphia Community ‘Walk Audits’ Begin on North Broad Street

Posted on 04/25/24

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The Philadelphia Livable Communities Network recently launched the first of its 2024 Walk Audit series along North Broad Street.

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While there, the Network – consisting of community organizations like AARP Pennsylvania, HACE, North Broad Renaissance, the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, Neighborhood Gardens Trust, Philadelphia Orchard Project, Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, Clean Air Council, and Feet First Philly – used AARP’s walk audit survey to make note of street conditions and whether this stretch of North Broad Street, between Spring Garden and Girard was accessible for anyone who needs to get around there.

Also joining the walk audit were representatives from Philadelphia’s Office of Transportation, Infrastructure and Sustainability; the Streets Department; and Councilmember Jeffrey Young’s office.

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Community Walk Audits provide an opportunity for community members to identify where and how to improve the walkability of their cities, towns and neighborhoods. During this activity, participants conduct a simple “walkability” survey.

Research consistently shows that the vast majority of people age 50 and older want to stay in their homes and communities for as long as possible. Unfortunately, many communities are not designed to support older residents. To empower communities nationwide, AARP works with strategic partners to raise awareness about the need for age-friendly livable communities.

For over a decade, Philadelphia’s Age-Friendly Action Plan has served as the blueprint for the Livable Communities Network to work together to make the commonwealth’s largest city a place that is good for growing up and growing older.

The Livable Communities team recognizes that a Walk Audit is a proactive first step to help inform local decision-making by prioritizing areas needing improvement and educating community members about the importance of street and sidewalk design.

The group gathered after the audit at the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging to discuss our initial findings.

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The Livable Communities Network will host at least two more walk audits this spring and summer. After this, we intend to create a final report from three major corridors and work with the council members and Mayor Parker’s administration to implement necessary changes by the community members and experts from the administration and councilmanic offices.

AARP Pennsylvania and the Philadelphia Livable Communities Network will have updates on our walk audit series throughout the spring and summer.

If you would like to become an AARP volunteer and help out on these audits, contact AARP PA Associate State Director Yocasta Lora at ylora@aarp.org.

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