A three-week art show will celebrate the history of Callowhill’s transformative Rail Park, and look at what the future holds for the project.
The October show, called Site/Sound: Revealing the Rail Park will feature art installations that combine sound and visual art, including soundscapes, music, murals, spoken word presentations, films, and live performances, hosted by Friends of the Rail Park and Mural Arts Philadelphia.
Much of the festival will be held at the current Rail Park—the quarter-mile stretch that starts on North Broad and Noble Street—but art installations will be set up on and around the future path of the park as well, according to a statement on the festival.
“This is an incredibly exciting initiative that offers our community the opportunity to celebrate the history, experience the present, and imagine the future of this public space,” said Kevin Dow, executive director of Friends of the Rail Park.
The first part of the park, which wrapped up last year, brought a short stretch of public space to Callowhill, following the former path of the long-gone Reading Viaduct Rail Line, which ran through the area in the early 1900s. Eventually, Friends of the Rail Park hope to extend it up past the parkway, to Girard and 31st Streets on the west side, and to 9th and Fairmount on the east.
When completed, the park—which some have compared to New York City’s High Line—would be a three-mile stretch of public space, but the group is still working on drumming up funds.
The festival will start in early October and continue for three weeks, with three installations (including performances) set up each weekend at sites along the proposed park expansion, including beneath the Reading Viaduct, and on 9th and Spring Garden streets.