Urban infill and slight of hand

Re-forming a street edge

Much has been written in recent years about the emptying out of the City core, with precipitous population drops, huge amounts of vacant housing stock, empty, weedy lots, and all the economic/social consequences. The neighborhood directly north and west of the Civil Rights Institute–once filled with housing–has long been emptied out, with large tracts of unused/underused land within blocks of the CBD. Cohen Carnaggio Reynolds has designed a new office/training center (above) which will mercifully fill some of that land on the 1400 block of 6th Avenue North. Independent Living Resources is the owner; they provide services and advocacy for disabled people. It would be wonderful if housing and more mixed-use developed in this area.

Aye, welcome to Philadelphia

On a lighter note, a good friend from Glasgow, Scotland sends these two pictures from her city, where Brad Pitt is currently filming a movie set in Philadelphia. Supposedly Glasgow was chosen in part because of its rectilinear street grid which mimics Philly’s. Fake American-style street signs and stop lights were erected to create the illusion.

The devil is in the details

The well-trained eye will notice the “To Let” signs left in the windows–the Scottish equivalent of “For Lease”. Perhaps the calculation is that the audience will be so focused on Pitt and his antics, no one will register this tell-tale sign. Or perhaps they’ll be digitally altered later. Regardless, a fascinating look at how, with a few signs and traffic lights, one city can (almost) transform into another.

[thanks to Cohen Carnaggio Reynolds for the rendering]

3 responses to “Urban infill and slight of hand

  1. Independent Living Resources of Greater Birmingham is very excited about moving into the Civl Rights District! It will be a base for us to provide independent living services and educate the public on the Disability Rights Movement.

  2. Nice. Subtle. Clean lines. I like.
    That whole area has so much potential.

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