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August 06, 2018

Here's everything happening during 2018 Philly Free Streets

The city is closing North Broad Street to motor vehicles on Aug. 11 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Philly Free Streets Events
Carroll - Philadelphia Free Streets Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Pedestrians and cyclists enjoyed a vehicle-free South Street between the Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers during the Philadelphia Free Streets event on Sept. 24, 2016.

Philly Free Streets is only five days out — so it's time to get prepared. 

We've put together a list of all the events happening, and trust me, there are a lot, so you'll need to plan where you're going and at what time. This is more of a highlight reel, but the city has put together a handy map with all of the programming available, which we've included in this article for your convenience.

Below you will also find the list road closures – besides North Broad – as well as the east-west cross streets that will remain open.

Alright, here we go.


The event is on Saturday, Aug. 11 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will stretch from City Hall to Germantown Avenue on North Broad Street.

Initially, the event stopped at Eerie Avenue, but was extended to Germantown Avenue after the idea to extend the route received a lot of support from community members.


North Broad Street is home to some of the city's richest history. Landmarks like the Uptown Theater, Divine Lorraine, and the Blue Horizon are the most well-known beauties that don't get nearly enough credit. But there's much more.

Billy Penn put together a list of many of the landmarks on North Broad you'll be able to get a look at if you wander north from City Hall.

You'll also be able to get a look at more than 15 murals from Mural Arts Philadelphia on the route, as well as three ground murals being painted especially for the event . Here's a sneak peek.


To kick it off, you can join Mayor Jim Kenney on his annual power walk north on Broad Street at 9 a.m., starting on JFK Boulevard. 

There will be lots family-friendly activities, if that's what you're looking for — like art projects with Mural Arts Philadelphia, a scavenger hunt focused on African American history in the neighborhood spanning almost the entire route, and the chance to color in sections of Broad Street with chalk. 

Some historical events include Jazz on the Avenue with a slew of Philadelphia jazz performers and musicians, which will begin at 12 p.m. on Cecil B. Moore Avenue. You also can book a tour of the historic Uptown Theater for $10 per person if you RSVP. You can buy tickets here.

I'm particularly excited about this one. A free pop-up beach will be available at the Leon H. Sullivan Human Services Center at Broad and Master streets. The best part? It's not just for Philly Free Streets. It will be up on Aug. 12, 18, and 19, too.

Some activities to get your blood pumping: Free yoga in front of Temple University's Lewis Katz School of Medicine at 10 and 11 a.m. and jump rope with Girls Jump Philly from 10 a.m. to noon. Indego bike share also is hosting a group ride at 11 a.m., starting at Broad and Girard. You can rent an Indego bike or bring your own. RSVP here.

For more information, visit the Philly Free Streets website.


One-way streets that feed into North Broad Street will be controlled by the Philadelphia Police Department, who will only allow access to local resident and business owners. The police may implement additional road closures in the interest of public safety, the city said.

The city announced Monday afternoon that the following roads will remain open for motorists crossing North Broad Street headed east or west:

JFK Boulevard
• Vine Street (eastbound traffic only)
• Spring Garden Street
• Ridge Avenue
• Girard Avenue
• Diamond Street
• Lehigh Avenue
• Allegheny Avenue
• Erie Avenue
• Butler Street

It is recommended if you are traveling to attend Philly Free Streets that you use the Broad Street Line and exit at any stop between Philadelphia City Hall and the Erie Station.

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