Innovative Infrastructure: New Stations Expand Drinking Water Access, Curb Plastic Waste

Infrastructure Week 2016: Drinking Water Stations

When people hear the word “infrastructure,” they think about roads, bridges and (if we’re lucky!) pipes.

But for Infrastructure Week 2016, we’re looking at elements of Philadelphia’s water system that might not come to mind when you think about infrastructure. (So far, we’ve looked at the thousands of new green tools created through the Green City, Clean Waters program and the 75,000+ storm drains found on city streets.)

Today, we’re looking at a brand-new kind of infrastructure that rethinks an old standard—the water fountain.

As Philadelphia celebrates the 90th Stotesbury Cup Regatta, the world's largest high school regatta, Philadelphia Water will unveil a new network of four eye-catching public water stations located along Kelly Drive.

"The Oval" to Open














This summer, the familiar oval parking lot in front of the Art Museum will become Philadelphia’s ““new shape of fun.”  Philadelphia Parks and Recreation (PP&R) is recreating Eakins Oval with the help of the Fairmount Park Conservancy, the William Penn Foundation and the City of Philadelphia. “The Oval” is going to be home to community programing and activities for all ages throughout the rest of the summer. Mural Arts will paint over the entire lot and PP&R will construct Philadelphia’s very own boardwalk – complete with a sand beach. The Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center will provide tours and hands on education about Philadelphia's water. 

The pop-up park will open July 17th through August 18th, Tuesday to Sunday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Each day will have specific free programming (see below), but you can expect interactive games, education and environmental programs, live entertainment, movies and food trucks on a daily basis. To learn more about this new initiative, visit or call 215-683-3600. You can also find The Oval on Facebook and on Twitter @TheOvalPHL!

Programming Includes:

Tuesdays- Wellness

Wednesdays- Arts & Culture

Thursdays- Environment

Fridays- Food & Flicks

Saturdays- Live Music Series

Sundays- Family Fun Day

Julian Abele Park Grand Reopening

Julian Abele Park: Ribbon Cutting and Grand Reopening from Philadelphia Water Department on Vimeo.

Love your Park week came to a close on Saturday, May 18th with events and festivities around the City. One of these events was the grand reopening of Julian Abele Park in the Graduate Hospital neighborhood. Check out this short video of Shelly Jones, a PWD engineer, speaking about PWD stormwater improvements at the event last weekend. Also, check out Naked Philly’s pre-game coverage for some great photos.

The park has undergone a number of improvements including innovative stormwater management work led by PWD as part of Green City, Clean Waters. The stormwater projects include tree trenches in the sidewalks adjacent to the park with paver accents to match the park's interior design. The tree trenches are designed to manage approximately the first 1.3 inches of rain during a storm. This means that runoff from more than half an acre is managed on site, reducing pollutants that end up in our rivers and streams by keeping stormwater out of the sewer.

City agencies and community advocates worked together to complete the various park improvements including the Department of Public Property (DPP), Parks and Recreation (PP&R), the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS), and the Friends of Julian Abele Park. Work was funded through neighborhood fund-raising and a grant from The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR). 

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