Covering a Highway and Uncovering the Power of Partnerships and People: The New Penn’s Landing Park

Mobile Workshop

With the new Penn’s Landing Park, Philadelphia is preparing to make a once-in-a-generation investment in healing the physical and psychological division that the construction of I-95 created between the city and the Delaware River waterfront. Capping over one block of the highway and the parallel arterial Columbus Boulevard before sloping down to the river’s edge, the project will create a new 12-acre riverfront civic space at the center of the waterfront.

This workshop explores the 10+ years of planning to create a welcoming, diversified civic space that meets the needs of planners, partners, and community members. We will explore how project partners (including the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation (DRWC), the City of Philadelphia, and PennDOT) worked with design experts (including project designer HargreavesJones) and community organizations (led by PennPraxis) to realize a unique opportunity to create a vibrant new waterfront district where vast concrete lots and roadway infrastructure currently dominate. The workshop will focus on the project’s planning process, design evolution, and robust engagement process that prioritized present-day topics around freedom, civic power, and cultural expression. With construction slated to begin in late 2022, the workshop will also touch on how the engagement strategy is shifting as the project moves from the engineering phase into construction and eventually operation.


  • Understand the practical and political considerations of complex infrastructural investments and how they can be met while still addressing social and community needs
  • Learn how to develop a strategy for engagement that is flexible and responsive for large, multi-year projects
  • Rethink partnerships to reach new audiences, deepen community networks, and build long-lasting support for civic projects

Tour Leaders

Mary Margaret Jones

President and CEO, Hargreaves Jones

Julie Donofrio

Managing Director, PennPraxis

Lizzie Woods

Vice President, Planning and Capital Programs, Delaware River Waterfront Corporation