With pluck and paint a parking lot can become a magic carpet, and an underused bit of parkland can become an attraction. That’s the idea behind The Oval, a now annual…
Fairmount, named after the largest hill in the area, is a neighborhood in Lower North Philadelphia. The neighborhood extends from Vine Street to Girard Avenue and from the Schuylkill River to Broad Street. During the American Revolution, British soldiers utilized the hill as a means of defense when they were fighting against American soldiers under George Washington’s command. By the 1800s, the Fairmount Dam and Water Works organization had utilized the large hill as a natural pump, letting water flow using gravity from reservoirs at the top of the hill to residential homes and business within the city. The Eastern State Penitentiary, built in the early 19th century, was another huge landmark in the neighborhood, it being one of the first prisons to emphasize reform rather then punishment. Since the prison's abandonment 1971, the jail has become a huge tourist attraction. Preserved in its ruined state, it is has unique attractions, such as being the prison which held Al Capone. Fairmount Park, located on the banks of the Schuylkill River between Vine Street and Roosevelt Boulevard, spans 4,100 acres, making it the city’s largest public park. The area is probably best known for the historic and symbolic Art Museum on Pennsylvania Avenue. The Museum sits on top of a hill over looking Benjamin Franklin Boulevard, a street lined with other museums and cultural landmarks. The neighborhood surrounding this cultural hot bed is filled with all kinds of history, with row and town houses dating back to the early 19th century. Today the neighborhood is going through a gentrification, as young professional families move in to take advantage of Fairmount’s ideal location and rich history.
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