The Daily News spoke with Jeff Lew, senior associate and architect at Bohlin Cywinski Jackson:
Q: How is the design planned to appear?
A: "We wanted to definitely recognize that it is an avenue that is full of performing and visual arts. We want to dress up the streets and encourage economic development. Down by Washington Avenue, there are two large vacant lots where we proposed to have an extraordinary destination point. Those would entail a grand-sized park, very similar to Washington Square and Rittenhouse Square. It would not only become an amenity, but a destination point to develop around."
Q: What value can the design offer the city?
A: "The value would be to essentially not only encourage development around the area, such as residential, commercial and retail, but to further liven up what we all know as the grand Avenue of the Arts, and extend that presence farther south. We want to make it a very viable and lively grand boulevard. . . . We're looking at this on a big-picture, long-term scale and how the Avenue of the Arts can be part of the mayor's Next Great City initiative.
"Our office is located right on Broad Street, and we're very committed toward making the city of Philadelphia more vibrant and lively, while promoting the development of the arts and other events."