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A Vision for the Lower Schuylkill

Developing a long-term, community-informed, conceptual plan for potential reuses for the PES site

View of the Lower Schuylkill toward the Philadelphia Energy Solutions site

The Lindy Institute is developing a community-informed Vision for the Lower Schuylkill, centered on the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery site, in partnership with the Clean Air Council, and we need the public's input to shape how the city plans for this significant regional asset. While its near future will be determined by bankruptcy court, we know that a long-term vision creates common ground and shared goals which public officials and advocates can work toward.  

We also hope join us for an upcoming public session to provide feedback on our initial framework for the vision – we’ll share a date and location soon. This meeting follows our community information session at Smith Playground on January 29th, 2020, which included State Senator Anthony Williams, staff representatives of City Council offices, and dozens of residents.

Lindy Institute civic engagement meeting at Smith Playground in South Philadelphia regarding the vision for the Lower Schuylkill

Project background:

The visioning process follows the closure of the refinery in summer 2019 and the uncertainty around the future use of the roughly 1,300 acres of refinery land. The vision will benefit from the work of the Refinery Advisory Group appointed by Mayor Kenney, which provided a public platform for a variety of perspectives about the future of the site, and the Managing Director's Office issued a report that provides background and a useful snapshot of current development options and stakeholder interests, which stakeholders can build upon to create a long-term vision. Community voices and Lindy Executive Director Harris Steinberg recently weighed in on the Inquirer's opinion page.

The visioning process is designed to consider possible futures for the site informed by input from residents and key stakeholders and promising local, national and global practices. The vision will articulate long-term, high-level design alternatives for potential future uses which align with the values of the diverse stakeholder group, emphasizing community health, sustainable development and family-sustaining jobs. The vision is informed by an advisory group comprised of key stakeholders, including community groups, labor organizations, government, academics, environmental groups, and elected officials. Follow the process here, get background or sign up for updates from the Lindy Institute.

This process is funded through a grant from The William Penn Foundation.