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September 26, 2017

Study: Road-ragey Philly has third worst parking rates on Earth

On the plus side, it's safer to drive here than in Bogota, Colombia!

Studies Transportation
03052015_PPA Matt Rourke/AP

A member of the Philadelphia Parking Authority writes a ticket for an expired meter in Center City.

If you live, work or spend any time in Philly, you already know that a) parking is a major issue here and b) people drive with anger fueling their hearts and vehicles on the regular.

This is not groundbreaking information, not by a longshot.

But this week, we’ve been given some insight into how we fare against the nation and world in those – and eight other metrics. 

This information comes from a study that broke down “a worldwide ranking of the Best and Worst Cities to Drive.” It was conducted by KFZteile24 which – I’ve come to learn – is the “largest online car parts retailer in Switzerland, Austria, and Germany.”

The company explained its inspiration as such:

To determine the 50 best and 50 worst cities for driving, we first examined the top 500 cities with the highest number of registered vehicles. Looking then into the cities with the most available traffic data, we decided on this definitive list of 100 cities.”

We believe every city should be great to drive in.

We conducted a study to discover which are the best and worst cities for driving, with the aim of enriching the debate around modern mobility and encouraging cities to learn from each other’s positive urban engagements and legislation.

The study examined several factors; congestion levels, public transport options, average cost of parking, cost of fuel, average speeds, levels of air pollution, accidents and fatalities, road quality and the frequency/perception of road rage.

Any traffic delays or congestion caused by temporary construction work was not taken into account for this study. Once all factors were researched for 100 cities, a final score was calculated for each.

Well, how’d we do?

On the plus side – when all the metrics are factored in – Philadelphia clocks in as the 43rd best driving city in the world.

From an America-only perspective, that means we’re better than Boston, Chicago, San Diego, Miami, New York City and Los Angeles but worse than Seattle, San Antonio and Austin, Texas.

"(Philadelphia) ranked well compared with cities such as Bogota, Colombia, where people are robbed whilst waiting at a traffic light." – Ricky Sutton, KFZteile24 spokesman

Internationally speaking, Philly is sandwiched between Auckland, New Zealand and Austin, Texas (which rated higher) and Tolouse, France, Edinburgh, UK, Brisbane, Australia and London (which rated lower).

As parking prices go, though, only two cities – New York City and Sydney, Australia – were worse as when comes to parking prices. (Per the study, “the parking score was calculated based on the cost of parking for one hour. Information on parking was provided by the official parking authority of the city.”)

So, what was the takeaway regarding Philadelphia’s world standing in the eyes of our foreign observers?

“Although many in Philly think they have it bad when it comes to parking and road rage," said spokesman Ricky Sutton, "the fact is that the city ranked well compared with cities such as Bogota, Colombia, where people are robbed whilst waiting at a traffic light, cars mysteriously lose parts while parked and where road rage involves over 500 yearly range attacks.

“Philadelphia drivers also seem to be nicer to each other compared to New York, Boston, Chicago, and Miami.”

He has a good point. I reckon it is safer to drive in most of Philly than in Bogota ... unless you're on the Schuylkill or Roosevelt Boulevard.

You can check out the study in its entirety via this link.