I’ve spent multiple blog articles praising the colorful initiatives of Mural Arts Philadelphia in the past—including a very recent article—but it occurred to me that precious few of these articles have actually depicted the City-funded initiative in its full form. Up to this point, I have compared Philly’s influence on mural programs in other cities,
From buildings to benches: with enough ingenuity, anything in Lehighton can get the mural treatment.
In the mid 2000s, I engaged in a group research project that assessed the economic impact of the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program (now called Mural Arts Philadelphia), the longest-running and largest initiative in the country—probably in the world. Started on a shoestring City budget in the mid-1980s to address the widespread graffiti issue, Mural Arts
The City of Easton, among the oldest in Pennsylvania and one of only three places to receive an official public reading of the Declaration of Independence, contains a Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument at the center of the city’s circle, a landmark that sets it apart from most smaller American cities.The circle rings the landmark.Across most
First spinning, then smoothies, then sports medicine: fusing physical therapy with the fitness center.
Way out in Somewheresville, Pennsylvania, a glass partition separates this physical therapy office from the rest of the facility. No big deal. It’s not surprising that a physical therapy office would want potential customers to see what its typical activities look like: the therapists themselves, doing their job, using the latest in rehabilitative equipment. But
I’ve seen some pretty remarkable cheats that allow people to circumvent paid parking, but this one has to take the cake. It comes courtesy of Carlisle, a well-situated, generally prosperous small city in south-central Pennsylvania. This meter sits on Pomfret Street, a remarkably well-preserved mixed-use corridor just a few paces away from Carlisle’s downtown civic
The cultural standards for commerce continue to evolve across the nation, to the point that shopping is no longer a peripatetic pastime. It seems obvious by this point that malls are bearing the brunt of this cataclysm. People still shop, but they don’t go shopping. Sure, there are plenty of sterile strip malls or shopping
A lazy Sunday drive along a rural limited-access highway in east-central Pennsylvania yielded an unusual surprise: a sizable residential complex that looked completely abandoned. But we were going fast enough that we could only catch a glimpse. It was so atypical that we had to pull over to investigate further. The background in the photo
As a general rule, the major public works initiatives of America suffer an almost complete bifurcation in our broader societal gaze: between the deliberately ornamental versus the purely utilitarian. We clutch our pearls in attempts to salvage the former—even if many critics impugn these embellishments as kitschy, schlocky, or some other great Yiddish adjective. Their
For those of us who care about this sort of thing (the precious few), it’s become increasingly obvious that bollards have become a significant element of the average streetscape. We owe some of this, no doubt, to the unfortunate reality of an escalating collective fear of terrorist attacks in the form of vehicle ramming, either
The borough of Waynesboro, Pennsylvania, just a few miles north of the Mason-Dixon line, isn’t a hotbed of economic activity, and it’s not receiving a surge of new arrivals. But as minor cities in Pennsylvania go, it could be in a lot worse shape. Unlike the vast majority of municipalities in the Keystone State, it