Few cities do pop-up parks better than Philadelphia. That was certainly the case this summer with the hugely popular Spruce Street Harbor Park, which transformed an under-utilized site along the Delaware River into a colorful and dynamic waterside retreat. As that project closes, and the site is transformed into the Waterfront Winterfest, plans have been unveiled for the city’s latest pop-up public space: Frankford Pause—or, as it has been dubbed, “The Pink Park.”
When it opens next spring, the hot pink space will occupy a vacant lot that is directly adjacent to an elevated rail station. Instead of trying to dampen the noise of trains rattling by, the designers created a space that is entirely in reaction to it: Frankford Pause is shaped like a megaphone with angled pink loops and strung-up lights that respond to the sounds of passing trains.
The park is intended to be a flexible space that can host concerts, art shows, movie screenings, markets, and other cultural events. To accommodate this mix of programming, there are plywood platforms and moveable cubes wrapped in artificial pink turf. Destination Frankford, the arts-based initiative behind placemaking projects in the neighborhood, explained that the Pause is also designed to be low-maintenance so it can easily be kept up if it ever graduates beyond temporary status.
The park was designed by the Community Design Collaborative, which was led by architect Alexa Bosse and her husband, landscape architect, Ari Miller. It received a grant from ArtPlace America and funding from multiple foundations, agencies, and banks.