The Museum of the American Revolution won’t officially open until next spring, but the construction fences surrounding it are now gone, allowing the public to enjoy the public plaza.
The museum’s plaza opened earlier today, two years after the corner of 3rd and Chestnut closed to the public for construction on the project. The museum was also dedicated to board chairman Gerry and Marguerite Lenfest, who donated $50 million to the $150 million campaign. Currently, $141 million has been raised.
Designed by landscape architecture firm Olin, the plaza is paved with bluestone and brick, which was salvaged from the original site, and wooden stadium-style benches. The opening also revealed a row of Revolutionary-era cannons that are displayed prominently at the corner in front of the museum.
Despite the ceremonial opening, there’s still some work to be done at the site. Some of the benches are still in need of finishing, and the newly-planted Valley Forge elm trees’ leaves were a bit brown, clearly in a bit of summer-weather shock.
One of the trees, dubbed "America’s Liberty Tree," was planted with soils from 15 or so different American Revolution sites.
In addition, two bronze sculptural panels will be installed later this fall. They’ll depict iconic paintings from the war.
Still, the plaza opening is a nice tease to the actual museum opening, which is set for April 19, 2017. Until then, consider the plaza as yet another space for visitors and locals alike to enjoy.
- Museum of the American Revolution’s plaza to open September 15 [Curbed Philly]
- 82K artifacts unearthed at the Museum of the American Revolution site [Curbed Philly]