There’s an informational meeting scheduled for Dec. 22. Miguel Horn and Jim Keller, AIA, the artist and architect behind the project respectively, will be on hand to present conceptual plans for the on-going renovations of the former South Philadelphia Branch of the Free Library.
Last time we checked in on the project, CHOP was busy installing vibration monitors in the basements of nearby houses to ensure everything was safe and sound during demolition. The site is completely clear today and construction on the innovative health center/library hybrid currently underway. The opening is slated for Dec. 2015.
In September, the William Penn Foundation awarded the Free Library of Philadelphia with the largest grant in its history—some $25 million, $18 million of which was earmarked to go towards new library centers that cater to the specific needs of the surrounding communities.
In the case of the South Philadelphia Branch, that means a private/public partnership between Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the City of Philadelphia to create a new kind of community base. Initial plans call for a health center, library, rec center and a CHOP urgent care center all under one roof.
Here’s the word from CHOP’s website:
The new health center will allow the City to expand its provision of dental care, prenatal care, mammography and a wide range of other healthcare services for children and adults. Additionally, integrating a health center, a library and a recreation center, will allow CHOP and the City of Philadelphia to create a complex that offers clinical care, wellness, prevention and literacy services to improve health outcomes for children and adults in South Philadelphia.