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What's Happening in:  East Passyunk Crossing 

Ground officially broken for East Passyunk gateway project

Since the plans were first announced for the East Passyunk gateway project back in January 2014, it’s been a hot-topic project for the avenue.

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Sam Sherman of PARC speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony

After showing you the updated plans earlier this week for the area at East Passyunk, Broad and McKean, ground was broken for the project last night.

Instead of the traditional, ceremonious act of shoveling, an excavator was used to officially break the ground for the project.

As we showed you with the updated renderings, the plans for the location are a bit different than initially presented. The fountain and bike share station originally planned for the location have been removed from the plans in favor of a more minimalistic look with more seating, a pavilion and more lighting for the area.

This is the flashiest of four lighting options under consideration. Renderings provided by PARC.

This is the flashiest of four lighting options under consideration. Renderings provided by PARC.

The project, which is expected to be completed around the same time as the Mifflin Street triangle project in June, will “create a sense of place,” according to Sam Sherman of the Passyunk Avenue Revitalization Corporation.

In addition to the improvements you see in the renderings, 11 new planters are also being placed along Broad Street between McKean and Snyder as part of the project. The planters were design by Curt Alexander, owner of Urban Jungle. We showed you a prototype of the planters back in December.

According to Sherman, this location will lend itself to special events. At the groundbreaking, he also mentioned the possibility for a weekend farmer’s market at the location.

The improvements to this location are happening thanks to a $495,000 William Penn Foundation grant.

At the groundbreaking, emphasis was put on the sense of community and growth East Passyunk Avenue has seen over the years.

Are you excited to see this project finally breaking ground?

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11 Responses to Ground officially broken for East Passyunk gateway project

  1. nahmean April 16, 2015 at 10:04 am #

    They’re going ahead with it even after all our comments yesterday? It’s like they didn’t even read them.

    • Aaron B April 16, 2015 at 11:55 am #

      HAHAH.
      Thank you for this
      I LOLed

  2. MG April 16, 2015 at 10:44 am #

    “The William Penn Foundation is dedicated to improving the quality of life in the Greater Philadelphia region through efforts that close the achievement gap for low-income children, ensure a sustainable environment, foster creativity that enhances civic life, and advance philanthropy in the Philadelphia region. In partnership with others, the Foundation works to advance opportunity, ensure sustainability, and enable effective solutions.”

    If this project was not in a public space and was funded by a corporation or private entity with no community-based agenda, PARC would be completely within it’s rights to move ahead with this project. But this project is in a PUBLIC space and received a half a million dollars from a foundation dedicated to improving the quality of life of Philadelphians, and all they can come up with is undulating neon.

    This is an insult to the neighborhood and a flagrant misuse of scarce resources.

  3. MG April 16, 2015 at 11:02 am #

    If this were a private project, in a private space, funded by a private entity with no community-based agenda, PARC would be well within its rights to move ahead. But this is a public project, in a public space, funded by a foundation “dedicated to improving the quality of life in the Greater Philadelphia region through efforts that close the achievement gap for low-income children, ensure a sustainable environment, foster creativity that enhances civic life, and advance philanthropy in the Philadelphia region.”

    How do undulating lights fulfill that mission and how are they worthy of a half a million dollars? How can one claim that something will “create a sense of place” while disregarding the actual people who live in that place?

  4. squishimichi April 16, 2015 at 11:24 am #

    wish I could “like” comments on this site. I agree with both nahmean and MG. After all the comments yesterday how can this just move forward?

  5. Joecarpenter April 16, 2015 at 12:04 pm #

    They can move along with it because it will look a 1000 times better than what is there. 500 thousand is nothing for a project that size. Part is working with a small budget what do u people want.

  6. DaveFame April 16, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

    I’m glad they didn’t include any trees in their plans, I hate shade and South Philly already has way too many trees.

    • Ian April 16, 2015 at 5:00 pm #

      Where can I park to hang out on the benches though?

      • spf5000 April 17, 2015 at 8:17 am #

        Dude, there are like tons crosswalks to park on and if those are full just drive your car right up to the bench.

  7. spf5000 April 17, 2015 at 8:20 am #

    If Trumark bank ever closes, that building and lot could be an awesome beer garden. Then there would be a reason hang out at Broad and East Passyunk.

    • Dan P. April 20, 2015 at 3:47 pm #

      Unfortunately what would likely happen is whatever buys TruMark (if it happened to fail) would just change the signs and keep on being a bank/credit union. Once a bank use is in place… kinda tough to get rid of it.

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