Dilworth Plaza Starting to Take Shape !
Dilworth Plaza will be transformed from an inaccessible, multi-level, unattractive, hard-surface plaza into a sustainable, well-maintained, green public space with no stairs or barriers from the street. By covering existing openings and removing walls, steps and barriers that make the plaza inaccessible today, the renovated Dilworth Plaza will add 20,571 square feet of new useable area (an increase of 21%) and will result in an expanded 120,557-square-foot public space. The new plaza will have a large lawn, tree groves, a programmable fountain and space for 400 benches and chairs. The underground will be dramatically improved as a new transit gateway, providing entrances to Broad Street and Market Street subways and the trolley lines. New elevators will make the transit levels accessible for the first time.
The project received funding through the federal Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program and is is scheduled for a major face-lift, and overview of the planned renovation is featured as part of DesignPhiladelphia and will be shown through November 18, 2011 at the Art Gallery at Philadelphia City Hall.
The park, a mess of granite walls and stairs, had many appearance-based as well as logistical issues that needed to be taken care of. The stark granite surfaces surfaces, confusing and inaccessible level changes, no clear entrance to the transit center below the square were cited to be among the problems.
In the 1600s William Penn envisioned the space to be Philadelphia’s cultural and commercial center, and the new design hopes to bring Dilworth Plaza more in line with Penn’s vision.
The project was designed by Philadelphia-based architecture and landscape architecture firms OLIN and KieranTimberlake, and is being carried out with the help of the City of Philadelphia Office of Arts Culture & the Creative Economy and the Center City District.
The fountain will be the main attraction, as a “celebration of the location’s history as the city’s first public fountain and pumping station.” The new fountain can be programmed to become a fountain or paved surface. This paved surface feature will be able to accommodate a variety of activities including concerts, markets and a winter ice-rink.
As a water feature, the space will fill with water, mist and lights that will follow the subway tracks below as part of artist Janet Echelman’s permanent installation.
The new plaza is expected to be completed by early 2014 and aside from the fountain will feature a cafe, a large grass area, tree groves and space for events to liven up the area. It will also feature a glass entrance to the transportation center below.
By Michael Angelina
Click Here For A 100% Free Search Of All Philadelphia Real Estate Listings
Prudential Fox & Roach Realtors – Society Hill
530 Walnut Street, Suite 260
Philadelphia, PA 19106