Philly to tow vehicles starting Sept. 20 to make way for papal security perimeters

If you live in Center City and have a car, you might need to move it during the week Pope Francis arrives in Philadelphia.

The city will begin towing cars in the “secure perimeter” and “secure vehicle perimeter” on Sunday, Sept. 20, at 6 p.m. on a schedule through Wednesday, Sept. 23, to accommodate construction of those two zones for the papal visit. See the photo of the map above for the towing schedule.

At a briefing at City Hall Thursday afternoon, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter said notices will go up starting Monday, Sept. 14.

“Prior to the beginning of towing, residents are strongly encouraged — and I’m asking you personally — to please park in any other legal long-term spot in the city,” he said. “You can also check, of course, with friends and family to see if they might have room near their home and keep an eye on your vehicle for that weekend.”

The Navy Hospital lot at 1600 Pattison Ave. will offer 1,500 free parking spots.

Another option is to buy a “no-tow” permit in advance from the Philadelphia Parking Authority. For $20, affected residents will get a placard for their windshields allowing them to park within the secure perimeters that exempts them from having their cars towed. The placard also guarantees them one of 2,000 spots in six garages:

Gateway Parking Garage – 16th & Vine streets
Family Courthouse Garage – 15th & Arch streets
Old City AutoPark – 2nd & Sansom streets
Jefferson AutoPark – 10th and Ludlow streets
The Gallery Mall AutoPark – 9th & Filbert streets
Chestnut Street Surface Lot – 8th & Chestnut streets

Garage parking with a PPA placard will begin at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 24.

Nutter also provided an update for businesses. Those within the secure perimeters will be able to receive deliveries and trash collection services between 12 a.m. and 4 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 26, and Sunday, Sept. 27. Delivery and trash collection vehicles entering the secure vehicle perimeter must be no longer than 28 feet.

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