Context - Fall 2016 - 19

The Viaduct offers civic scale and accessible domestic elements, like stoops, porches, and swings,
which are largely missing from many of the residential areas of the Callowhill-Chinatown neighborhood.

the success of Pop-Up parks indicates a more important and consistent
need, the need for designed open space.
Infrastructure suggests permanence. Pop-Ups, tactical urbanism,
or temporary installations are exactly the opposite: fleeting moments
rather than a lasting contribution to the urban fabric. There is a place
for seasonal or mobile installations. They serve a distinct purpose. They
have and will continue to have a role amidst the open spaces in urban
environments, but should we embrace the ephemeral to the detriment
of permanent public space? Should we divert money from a permanent
space in a city that both craves accessible and activated public space
and has spatial resources to support permanent green space?
The multi-year process to organize, collaborate, discuss, imagine,
design, develop, detail, and fund-raise for the Rail Park has bolstered
the Callowhill community even before the implementation of a physical park space. Relationships and community are formed by coming
together with a shared purpose and mission. Relationships at Pop-Ups
gardens are temporally limited. Perhaps more importantly, Pop-Ups
rarely result from community participation, but typically are a packaged
installation generated by non-residents. They lack the vital component
of community ownership and buy-in, neighborhood integration, and
continued oversight and care.
Though many Pop-Ups are revenue generating, investment into
temporary space yields only temporary return. Pop-Ups, while they draw
occasional crowds and revenue for a limited amount of time during the
year, do not entice growth. Green infrastructure is an asset of urban
neighborhoods that draws new residents and businesses, as evidenced
by case studies such as the High Line in Manhattan, creating a valuable
return on investment. Location is among the greatest selling points for
growing neighborhoods, and location is defined by convenient access
to resources like parks. Green infrastructure is a viable asset to entice
growth while Pop-Ups affect few spaces in the long-term.

If the primary goal is to create powerful and lasting memories that
transcend both product and the site itself, then a space need not be
temporary. Transcendence of site is more profound if permanent and
allowed to grow with and for the people that claim the space as their
own. A space that is supported by the surrounding neighborhood is a
sustainable space. The experiential purpose, while valid, fails to address
real urban challenges for neighborhoods that desire productive growth
and investment. Lasting memories and vibrant, impactful experiences
are outcomes achievable via enduring green space.
Our hope as participants in the rich process of green infrastructure
and neighborhood development is that greater priority is given to
permanence in Philadelphia's public spaces and for projects, that fulfill
many of the City's existing priorities including stormwater management,
greened-acres, and tree planting. The Friends of the Rail Park, Center
City District, and so many others share our passion for the importance
of public space and the perseverance required for affecting positive
change in surrounding communities. If all goes well, it is our hope that
as you are reading this, we will be, after all these years of design, discussion, negotiation, and community building, looking out our studio
windows at a flurry of activity. Rather than tour groups, however, we
hope to see those clambering along the great stone walls and massive
steel structure in hard hats, working to build the centerpiece of one of
the City's great neighborhoods for generations to come. ■
Bryan Hanes, founder and principal at Studio Bryan Hanes, has been involved
in the transformation of major public spaces across the country.
Terra Edenhart-Pepe fulfills a multidisciplinary role at Studio Bryan Hanes as
operations manager.
Renderings courtesy of Studio Bryan Hanes.

AIA Philadelphia | context | FALL 2016 19


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Context - Fall 2016

Editors’ Letter
Up Close
Design Profiles
Index to Advertisers
Mayor Kenney’s Infrastructure Policy
Green Infrastructure in Philadelphia: The Reading Viaduct Rail Park
Streets: They’re Not Just for Cars Any More
Context - Fall 2016 - ebelly1
Context - Fall 2016 - ebelly2
Context - Fall 2016 - cover1
Context - Fall 2016 - cover2
Context - Fall 2016 - 3
Context - Fall 2016 - 4
Context - Fall 2016 - Editors’ Letter
Context - Fall 2016 - Community
Context - Fall 2016 - 7
Context - Fall 2016 - 8
Context - Fall 2016 - 9
Context - Fall 2016 - Up Close
Context - Fall 2016 - 11
Context - Fall 2016 - Mayor Kenney’s Infrastructure Policy
Context - Fall 2016 - 13
Context - Fall 2016 - 14
Context - Fall 2016 - 15
Context - Fall 2016 - Green Infrastructure in Philadelphia: The Reading Viaduct Rail Park
Context - Fall 2016 - 17
Context - Fall 2016 - 18
Context - Fall 2016 - 19
Context - Fall 2016 - Streets: They’re Not Just for Cars Any More
Context - Fall 2016 - 21
Context - Fall 2016 - 22
Context - Fall 2016 - 23
Context - Fall 2016 - 24
Context - Fall 2016 - 25
Context - Fall 2016 - 26
Context - Fall 2016 - 27
Context - Fall 2016 - Expression
Context - Fall 2016 - 29
Context - Fall 2016 - Design Profiles
Context - Fall 2016 - 31
Context - Fall 2016 - 32
Context - Fall 2016 - 33
Context - Fall 2016 - 34
Context - Fall 2016 - 35
Context - Fall 2016 - 36
Context - Fall 2016 - Marketplace
Context - Fall 2016 - Index to Advertisers
Context - Fall 2016 - cover3
Context - Fall 2016 - cover4