Last week, the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia marked National Bike Safety Month with two community events, Ride of Silence and Bike to Work and Wherever Day, highlighting the importance of funding and expanding safe bicycle infrastructure to create a cleaner, greener, and safer Philadelphia.

Photo by Chris Young

The 20th Annual Philadelphia Ride of Silence took place Wednesday, May 15th, 2024, with over two hundred people attending and riding in the rain to honor the fourteen cyclists killed in the Delaware Valley last year. 

This event continues each year due to the number of bicyclists killed due in part because of the lack of investments in safe road infrastructure. There has never been a greater need to fund and expand safe bicycle infrastructure. Cyclists deaths hit a 46-year high in 2023 with almost 900 bicyclists killed nationwide; Philadelphia also lost a record number of cyclists in traffic crashes. The City has a goal of building 40 miles of high-quality bike lanes by the end of 2025 and a new goal of building improvements on every mile of the high injury network by 2030 — and yet, the City cut funding for Vision Zero over 50% in the proposed budget. 

“In the 20 years that we have worked on this event, I have to say what’s important and what is at the core of the vision zero program is just one word,” said John Siemiarowski, co-leader of the Ride of Silence Philadelphia. “RESPECT! We are here tonight and every year until there are zero bicyclists deaths to emphasize and demand that cyclists be treated with respect.”

Photo by Chris Young

This silent ride is held at more than 250 locations worldwide with people coming together to ask for greater investments to ensure the safety of all cyclists across the nation. The goal of the Ride of Silence is to not have another ride, but to have a year with zero bicyclists deaths. 

Ceremonial Bike Lift – Photo by Chris Young

The Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia would like to thank the following for helping with the ride:

  • Ride of Silence Philadelphia Chapter
  • BCGP Staff and Volunteers
  • Families For Safe Streets of Greater Philadelphia
  • Stuart Leon Bicycle Crash Law 
  • City of Philadelphia: The Office of Information and Technology
  • City of Philadelphia: The Office of Transportation and Infrastructure Systems 
  • City of Philadelphia: The Office of Multimodal Planning
  • Philadelphia Police Department assistance 
  • PBMA marshals
  • Volunteers who helped temporarily block intersections for the duration of the ride 

Photo by Ellie Esterowitz

On Friday, May 17th, we celebrated Bike to Work & Wherever Day by riding to City Hall from three different parts of the city alongside Philadelphia Councilmembers Mark Squilla, Jamie Gauthier, and Rue Landau; State Representatives Donna Bullock and Ben Waxman; and staffers from the office of State Senator Nikil Saval. Group rides began from Energizer Stations in North Philadelphia, South Philadelphia, and University City, and ended with a press conference on Dilworth Plaza.

Based on a report released earlier this year by the Bicycle Coalition, bicycle commuting continues to recover from the pandemic—ridership is now about 90% of what it was in 2019. Indego continues to see growth with more than 1 million trips in 2023. South Philadelphia has a bicycle commuting rate that is among the top 10 for neighborhoods throughout the nation, and Philadelphia maintains its position of having the highest bike commuting rate among U.S. cities with a population over 1 million residents. Philadelphia now has almost 30 miles of protected bike lanes and is on its way to reaching Mayor Kenney’s goal of 40 miles by the end of 2025.

Photo by Uma McGuire

“Whether you bike to work or bike for fun, riding a bike in the City of Philadelphia should be safe, empowering and accessible for all Philadelphians.  And, of course, biking helps to reduce an individual’s carbon footprint and has the added benefit of reducing traffic congestion,” PA Representative Donna Bullock said.

Photo by Ellie Esterowitz

The Bicycle Coalition hosts Bike to Work & Wherever Day to celebrate bike riders everywhere and to encourage and support people who are interested in increasing their active transportation efforts. Biking saves time, money, lowers stress, is a good form of exercise, good for the earth and—perhaps most importantly—is fun.

2024’s Bike to Work & Wherever Day celebration, group rides, and press conference were presented by Independence Blue Cross. Thank you also to the Philly Bike Ride, Penn Museum, Greenstreet Coffee, and Kate’s Real Food for providing refreshments at Philly Bike Ride Energizer Stations.

Philly Bike Ride Energizer Station, South Philly


The Coalition’s work is only possible thanks to the collective support of individuals like you across our communities in the Greater Philadelphia Region—JoinRenew, or make a One Time Donation today, so we can continue programming and advocacy for better, safer, and more accessible streets now and into the future!

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