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CITYSCAPE: Four pedestrian plazas to open by summer 2012
by Samantha Melamed
A plan to scatter Philadelphia with pedestrian-friendly mini parks and plazas will take a step forward next summer with the establishment of four new pedestrian plazas: two in West Philadelphia, one that we previously told you about at Passyunk and South, and one at Washington Lane and Stenton Avenue, in the western reaches of West Oak Lane.
University City District (UCD) will run the two West Philly plazas: one at 42nd and Woodland and ther other at 48th and Baltimore. According the Mayor's Office for Transportation and Utilities —which put out a call for grants for the plazas earlier this year — "UCD will work with local carpenters and fabricators to create benches from reclaimed logs from Woodland Cemetary, recycling materials while making a connection to one of University City's greatest and least heralded open spaces."
Ogontz Avenue Revitalization Corp. (OARC) will run the Washington Lane park, on a spur between Washington and Stenton that was planned to be closed anyway, while South Street Headhouse District will run the Passyunk Avenue site, on the spot where a weekly farmers' market already takes place.
According to MOTU: "The City will work closely with OARC, SSHD and UCD and their respective communities to bring pedestrian amenities to their neighborhoods.Pedestrian Plazas use planters, benches and other features to create places for Philadelphians to relax and enjoy their City in spaces that were once the exclusively of cars. In early 2012, the City and its partners will reach out to their respective communities to discuss these projects and gain neighborhood feedback. By early summer 2012, the City expects that Philadelphians from South Street to Stenton Avenue will be using pedestrian plazas."
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