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City Hall’s William Penn statue cleaning to begin in May

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After months of delays, Billy’s finally getting his bath

The 37-foot-tall statue of William Penn on City Hall is undergoing a restoration.
Courtesy of Shutterstock

After months of delays, the William Penn statue that sits atop City Hall is finally getting a much-needed bath after 12 years.

Monday, May 1 is the new start date of Billy’s six-week-long restoration, Margot Berg, public art director of the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy confirmed to Curbed Philly.

The impending makeover of the 37-foot-tall statue was supposed to begin last September, but it had to be delayed because restoration of the bronze statue is warm weather-dependent. It was then potentially scheduled to begin next week, but the city decided to wait until after the NFL Draft, which takes place April 27 to 29.

New Jersey-based Moorland Studios will be leading the conservation efforts. The first week will involve installing scaffolding around the statue, which will then be washed with detergent. They’ll check for signs of wear and tear, patch up any spots, and then the statue will be waxed and buffed.

In total, the work will take about six weeks and the observation deck will be closed during that time. So get a good look at Billy Penn while you can.