A video was posted to Twitter on Tuesday evening showing a person in a Toyota SUV driving the wrong way down South 11th Street in an effort to get ahead of traffic. The video is just the latest in a series posted by Philadelphia cyclist Kate Mundie to YouTube, depicting erratic, scofflaw drivers throughout Philadelphia.
Watch the video below.
Unfortunately, Mundie was not able to decipher the license plate number from the Toyota Highlander driving on the wrong side of the street (I wasn’t either, after watching several times). The driver is likely still driving, perhaps on the wrong side of the road, right now.
Mundie says 11th Street is her most “direct” way home and has sharrows (shared lane markings) in the lane. But many drivers see Philly’s streets as the wild west, attempting to beat red lights and park their vehicles wherever they want.
“[N]early all of the negative bike/car interaction that I have experienced happens on that wide two way section of 11th,” Mundie writes by email. “There are always cars or delivery trucks in the bike lane. The traffic lights at 11th and Carpenter are timed to hold cars back. If a car is stopped at the traffic light at Christian (going south) or Washington (going north) you have to floor it to get through the light at Carpenter.”
Oddly, she notes, drivers on 9th and 10th Streets often yell at her to use the infrastructure on 11th Street! “I am trying to use the infrastructure I am given but that section of 11th invites the strangest driving behavior,” she adds.
So, be sure to watch out for this driver in South Philadelphia (or anywhere in the city.)
Additionally, the Bicycle Coalition and our partners are continually advocating for more protected and separated lanes throughout the city (the city’s first two-way parking-protected lane, in Northeast Philly, was unveiled last Friday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony). Eleventh Street was not included in the DVRPC’s grant award for a safer protected bicycle network. But such a project would be worth advancing, especially since 11th is one of South Philly’s widest north-south streets.