The sparsely landscaped triangle where Passyunk meets Broad and McKean will be torn up and redone this summer, creating a new public “flex” space and a much more attractive gateway to the avenue.
Sam Sherman, director of the Passyunk Avenue Revitalization Corporation, said the William Penn Foundation awarded a $495,000 grant, which is to be released in May. Construction is expected to start as early as that month.
Highlights of the redesign include much better lighting, seating, a water feature, built-in speakers, a bike-share station, a pergola where vendors or DJs could set up for community events and more – kind of like the fountain at 11th and Passyunk, which PARC also manages.
A public unveiling of the project, which Sherman said was the result of several meetings with key community members, will be held tomorrow night, Wednesday Jan. 29 at 1930 S. Broad St. at 6:30 p.m. That’s the old St. Agnes hospital at Broad and Passyunk. Signs will direct you to the conference room.
Possibly just as interesting is that the grant will also include streestcape improvements to the block of Broad between Passyunk and Snyder, including planters and better lighting there as well. PARC will maintain both spaces.
It will be kind of like at the fountain, with speakers and new lighting,” Sherman said. “The pergola thing is a flex space, so you can use for it special events. We have a food vendor who wants to work out of it a couple days a week.”
He said it’s much to early to name the vendor because the work won’t be completed until the fall.
“Our big issue is it’s the first thing you see when you come onto the avenue off of Broad,” Sherman said. “Visually we want to make sure it’s well-lit and interesting and that it attracts people’s eye. That’s why we have the lighting scheme. South Philly seems to like the overhead lighting.”
Hey, if it worked at the fountain, why not at Broad and Passyunk? Discuss.