Talk: Beyond the High Line: Transforming Philadelphia

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Monday, June 24, 2013 - 6:30pm to 7:30pm

Talk: Beyond the High Line: Transforming Philadelphia

EnlargeBeyond the High Line: Transforming Philadelphia

The High Line gets a lot of hype, but it is just one example of the many ways community leaders and creative thinkers are re-imagining public space.

Stop by for the launch of this year’s Beyond the High Line, a series of free talks about adaptive reuse projects around the world. The first talk features the Reading Viaduct, a 4.7-mile-long railway traveling through Philadelphia. Beginning in 1893, the railway carried both passengers and mail to and from the Reading Terminal, in downtown Philadelphia. When the railway ceased operations in the 1980s, nature took over, covering the tracks with wild grasses and self-seeded shrubs.

Paul Levy, of Center City District, will present plans for his business improvement district’s vision of a Philadelphia destination centered around a transformed Reading Viaduct. Leah Murphy, of Interface Studio, will speak on behalf of Friends of the Rail Park, an advocacy group that seeks to preserve the viaduct’s historical industrial character and existing self-seeded landscape.

14th Street Passage
On the High Line at West 14th Street

This High Line Program is free and open to visitors of all ages. No RSVP required. A free reception with the speakers will follow the presentation.

Stay for dinner and dessert after the talk. On the High Line between West 15th and West 16th Streets you will find tacos, gelato, ice pops, and more seasonal treats from our food vendors, as well as Terroir at The Porch, a full-service, open-air café serving beer, wine, and small plates with sweeping views of the Hudson River. Learn more.

Want to learn more about other adaptive reuse projects around the world? Sign up for the High Line E-News to receive information about future Beyond the High Line lectures in the summer and fall.

About Paul Levy
Paul Levy is the founding chief executive of Philadelphia’s Center City District (CCD), a $20 million downtown management district, which provides security, cleaning, place marketing, promotion, planning, and public space improvement services for the central business district of Philadelphia. Since its inception in 1991, Paul has overseen the completion of $68 million in streetscape, lighting, park, and façade improvement, the renovation of Collins Park and of Sister Cities Park, and is currently working on a reconstruction of Dillworth plaza. Paul serves on the boards of many civic organizations, some of which include the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Independence Visitor Center Corporation. Paul has received many awards acknowledging the impact he has had on the community including the 2011 “Heart of Philadelphia Award”; the 2010 Francis A. Wister Award; the 2002 Wyck-Strickland Award; the 2002 Philadelphia Committee on City Policy Community Leadership Award; and the 1996 Pennsylvania Society of Architects Honor Award.

About Leah Murphy
Leah received a Master of Urban Planning degree with a concentration in Real Estate and Urban Development from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Stemming from interest in digital arts developed during her undergraduate studies in Fine Arts and English Literature at the University of Pennsylvania, Leah has created and exhibited several digital video and animation projects exploring these media as valuable narrative forms of representation of urban planning ideas and analysis. Leah has also been actively engaged in studio pedagogy, having served as teaching assistant for multiple urban planning studios, 3-D digital modeling, digital video, and animation studios, and also having led an urban planning studio as a part of Harvard Graduate School of Design’s Career Discovery program.

Beyond the High Line is supported by The Seed Fund, and presented by Friends of the High Line in partnership with Next City.