Reimagining the Civic Commons

Reimagining Public Space in Philadelphia

In 2014, Philadelphia was identified by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation as ‘learning laboratory’ to explore new ideas and pilot new strategies related to ‘reimaging the civic commons’ that, if successful, could be replicated in cities nationwide.

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Belmont Plateau Trail Restoration

Revitalizing a Regional Asset

One of the most historic courses in American cross country, the Belmont Plateau in West Fairmount Park is a place where generations of Philadelphia runners trained and raced.

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ArtPlace

Investing in arts, culture and community

An opportunity to invest in arts and culture as part of our mission to make Philadelphia's park system a national model of urban revitalization, sustainability and civic engagement.

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The New Fairmount Park

A multi-year plan for East and West Fairmount Park

The Conservancy is in the process of a multi-year focus in East and West Fairmount Park, beginning with the completion and unveiling of The New Fairmount Park — a community-driven revitalization plan created with Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and Penn Praxis.

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Centennial Commons

West Fairmount Park

The Conservancy has been working closely with the Parkside community to envision and implement a new recreation/play space along the Parkside Avenue edge of West Fairmount Park.

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Mander to the River

East Fairmount Park

The “New Fairmount Park” plan seeks to improve neighborhood access into the park while supporting interventions that allow users to engage with natural systems — like creek valleys — in a balanced and ecologically sensitive way.

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Hunting Park Revitalization Project

A new green anchor in North Philadelphia

The Conservancy recently completed Phase I of the revitalization of Hunting Park, investing $4.5 million in capital projects and programs.

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Concourse Lake Stabilization

Improving water quality and enhancing habitat

Stabilization work on sections of Concourse Lake's northern wall.

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Fairmount Park Trolley Trail

Rediscovering lost linkages

Creating a continuous trail that follows the pathway of the scenic trolley that ran through the woods of West Fairmount Park in the early 20th century.

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Completed Projects

Relighting of Boathouse Row

A Philadelphia icon

Fairmount Park’s Boathouse Row is a central identifying icon of Philadelphia. A favorite Philadelphia “postcard” is Boathouse Row at night, with the lights that outline the boathouses reflected in the water of the Schuylkill River.

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The Boxers' Trail

East Fairmount Park

The completed Boxers’ Trail connects the historic Smith Memorial Playground and the historic mansions of Fairmount Park to the Strawberry Mansion neighborhood as well as to the regional trail system that leads to Valley Forge. A fully implemented Boxers’ Trail now invites a new group of diverse park enthusiasts to experience a beautiful, but underutilized, portion of Fairmount Park.

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Water Works South Garden and Cliff Paths

From the moment the Fairmount Park Water Works opened in the early 1800s, it was hailed as an engineering marvel and an architectural masterpiece. The Water Works’ South Garden was considered one of Philadelphia’s most beautiful places and formed the basis for what would be become the Philadelphia parks system.

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McPherson Square Park

KaBOOM! It’s here!

In 2010, over 200 volunteers from the Kensington community, Philadelphia Flyers, Wells Fargo, Impact Services Corporation, Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and the Conservancy built a brand new 2,500 square foot playground in McPherson Square Park for hundreds of youth to enjoy.

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