Dough Boy Advances

Photo: Peter Woodall

Call it the Second Street  Connector. In about a month the slim triangle at Second and Spring Garden will be a wedge park and a trail, designed by DIGSAU Architects, leading from the NoLibs core toward the Delaware Waterfront with Delilah’s along the way.

Photo: Peter Woodall

The spot is known for its statue of a WWI soldier or “dough boy.” Dedicated “IN MEMORY OF OUR BOYS OF THE SIXTH, ELEVENTH AND TWELTH WARDS WHO SERVED IN THE GREAT WAR OF NATIONS, 1914-1918,” the cast bronze statue is one of dozens of memorials produced in the 1920s by sculptor John Paulding. The statue, titled “Over the Top,” is sometimes misidentified as the work of E.M. Viquesney, who produced hundreds of extremely similar statues titled “Spirit of the American Doughboy.” They were so similar, in fact, that Paulding’s foundry sued Visquesney for copyright infringement.

The park will be excavated and sunken in to give the dough boy a proper backdrop and so that the space can serve as a rain garden. DIGSAU partner Jeff Goldstein says the park will have a bridge for those who normally use the park as a shortcut to the EL.

This one node is part of an interwoven chain of projects meant to better connect waterfront neighborhoods to the river.

Planning for the park began back in 2009 with a grant from the William Penn Foundation. The design was informed by intensive community input, synthesized by DIGSAU, and collaboration with the Philadelphia Water Department and the Morris Arboretum.

For the city’s stormwater management plan, click HERE.

Anna Berezowska and Peter Woodall contributed to this story.

About the author

Nathaniel Popkin is co-founder of the Hidden City Daily and author of three books of non-fiction, including Philadelphia: Finding the Hidden City (with Peter Woodall and Joseph E.B. Elliott) and two novels, Everything is Borrowed and Lion and Leopard. He is co-editor of Who Will Speak for America, an anthology forthcoming in June 2018, and the senior writer of the film documentary "Philadelphia: The Great Experiment."



Leave a Reply

Comment moderation is enabled, no need to resubmit any comments posted.

Recent Posts
Nomination Withdrawal Signals The End For Stone Cottage In Overbrook Farms

Nomination Withdrawal Signals The End For Stone Cottage In Overbrook Farms

December 14, 2018  |  News

Historical Commission withdraws nomination for 127-year-old cottage in Overbrook Farms after owner St. Joseph's University neglects the home for over a decade. Starr Herr-Cardillo has the news > more

“Star Doors” Take Center Stage In A City Of Rows

December 13, 2018  |  Vantage

Like the human eye, exterior doors can be a portal into the soul of a row house. Ashley Hahn drops in with the backstory on “star doors,” a singular piece of Philadelphia charm > more

Sixty Years Of Holiday Cheer At Wanamaker's

Sixty Years Of Holiday Cheer At Wanamaker’s

December 12, 2018  |  Last Light

Patrick Glennon gives us a look at the origins of a holiday tradition at the Wanamaker Building > more

City Archives Opens New HQ In Northern Liberties

City Archives Opens New HQ In Northern Liberties

December 6, 2018  |  Buzz

New digs in NoLibs for the Philadelphia City Archives. Michael Bixler has the details > more

Give a Gift, Get a Gift: 2018 Fund Drive Perks Are Here

Give a Gift, Get a Gift: 2018 Fund Drive Perks Are Here

December 6, 2018  |  Uncategorized, Vantage

Our annual fund drive is in full swing and this year's perks are better than ever, so have a look. Not to mention: all donations will be matched dollar for dollar by NewsMatch! > more

Architecture Trips The Light Fantastic in <em>Philly After Dark</em>

Architecture Trips The Light Fantastic in Philly After Dark

December 4, 2018  |  News

The Athenaeum of Philadelphia shines a light on local architecture at night with their illuminating exhibition, "Philly After Dark." Greg Prichard has this review > more