October 11, 2012

Before & After Green: Schenley Plaza

Image: Schenley Plaza (foreground) circa 1920s

Between 1923 and 1949, Schenley Plaza was "a formal entrance plaza" to Schenley Plaza, one of four regional parks in Pittsburgh.   The landscape was designed by James Greenleaf.  By 1949, the plaza was converted to a parking lot to accommodate Pirates fans as well as the "expanding universities, businesses, and healthcare community" in the Oakland neighborhood.  I first saw the plaza in 2007, one year after the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy has transformed the existing parking lot back into a park.

Image: Schenley Plaza with parking (date unknown)
Image: Schenley Plaza, central lawn, 2007
 The restored parkland is five acres and incorporates "Bryant Park’s best design features, such as permeable edges, lush gardens, a carousel, quality lighting, a great lawn, food kiosks, space for programming events and activities, and moveable tables and chairs."  Additional photographs of the plaza can be viewed here.

Did you miss the first two "Before & After Green" profiles?  Read about the East River Stormwater Vegetative Control here and Halcyon Commons in Berkeley, CA here.

Note: The content of this post is slightly modified from one about transforming parking lots to parks and permeable spaces published on February 12, 2009.

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