As part of $38 million in PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources grants announced last week, two of the city's Delaware waterfront parks will be getting upgrades. The Department of Parks and Recreation got a $100,000 matching grant for a new playground at Penn Treaty Park and a $500,000 grant to rebuild a compromised section of the pier at Pulaski Park.
The new playground at Penn Treaty Park in Fishtown will be a slightly different location because “it’s in a low point that’s often wet,” explained Mark Focht, First Deputy Commissioner of Philadelphia Parks & Recreation. "We’re still keeping it amongst the big trees. But we’re moving it a little bit to the west."
To pay for that project city capital budget and Fairmount Parks Conservancy funding will match the state grant, along with a possible contribution from the Friends of Penn Treaty Park. This improvement is consistent with the master plan for the park by Studio Bryan Hanes developed a few years ago and construction will likely get underway in the summer or fall 2015.
Upriver at Pulaski Park (above), the $500,000 matching grant comes on the heels of major park improvements made over the last couple of years, including a new link to the Port Richmond Trail which opened this fall. The grant will allow the city to begin careful analysis of a portion of the pier that is sinking and hopefully rebuild that section. Currently this area closed off with chainlink fence.
“We don’t know that its unsafe but there is evidence of subsidence,” Focht said. “We have to do some more thorough engineering work on it.”
Between city and state funding, Pulaski Park could see $1 million spent to rebuild and shore up the pier.
Ashley Hahn is an independent writer with a background in historic preservation and city planning. She started Eyes on the Street for PlanPhilly in 2011 and was PlanPhilly's managing editor from 2015-2017. Ashley has lived in 12 zip codes that she can think of, including neighborhoods in Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, and New York. She is a Philadelphian by choice.