September 12, 2004 |
The Philadelphia area is so rich in architectural history, it will be hard to choose only a few examples to highlight when he speaks on the subject next week in Springfield Township, Bryan Van Sweden said. "Generally, Pennsylvania has a broad range of architecture and building styles," said Van Sweden, acting chief of grant programs at the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission's Bureau for Historic Preservation. He said there are very good examples of just about any kind of building.
January 9, 2016 |
The history of 20th-century architecture abounds with buildings that critics love and users hate, but there aren't many that have suffered such extreme public mood swings as the Richards Medical Research Laboratory at the University of Pennsylvania. Designed by the acclaimed Philadelphia architect Louis Kahn , the clutch of brick towers was celebrated in a solo show at New York's MoMA in 1961, a year before it opened. The museum deemed Richards "the most consequential building constructed in the United States" since World War II. The dirty secret is that Penn's scientists hated Richards from the day they moved in. They complained there was no privacy in the large, open-plan labs, and no respite from the natural light that flooded in from Kahn's generous windows.
February 26, 2013
By Joseph Minardi Schiffer Publishing. 272 pp. $50 Reviewed by Judy Hill More than once, wobbling on a bicycle atop the uneven cobblestones of Germantown Avenue in Chestnut Hill, I've cursed the irregular surface, wishing for smooth, predictable asphalt. According to Joseph Minardi's new history of Northwest Philadelphia, I have little to grumble about. Compared with the 1700s at least, when Germantown Avenue was known as "the worst road in America. " Wagons routinely became mired in deep mud, and horses were so badly injured after the six-mile trek from Center City to Germantown that they frequently had to be put down.
July 13, 2000 |
Joe Haro's profession is marketing, which he has taught at Camden County College, but one of his avocations is architecture. On Saturday, the Haddonfield resident will lead an architectural tour of his hometown, which he calls a "treasure trove" for architectural enthusiasts. "So many architectural styles from America's history are here, from Colonial taverns to Beaux Arts designs," said Haro, a member of the Philadelphia-based Foundation for Architecture, which is sponsoring the tour.
March 10, 1995 |
For historian John M. "Jeff" Groff, houses are more than bricks and sticks. They are tangible expressions of how people see themselves within the social order. Groff, of Strafford, is executive director of Wyck, a historic-house museum in Germantown where nine generations of one family lived from the 1690s through 1973. As an avocation, Groff for years has been compiling information on noteworthy old Main Line houses and estates. Name a historic Main Line mansion, and there is a good chance he can name the architect who designed it, the family that built it and the business in which the family prospered.
June 21, 2013 |
TRAVEL THE WORLD, and it's hard not to trip over the many monuments and museums commemorating war and strife. But John Connors wants to know: Where are the tributes to famous friendships? Connors is leading the charge to create a museum near Penn Treaty Park in Fishtown to honor the peace treaty William Penn made with Native Americans there in 1682. Although artists, politicians and preservationists have celebrated the historic pact made under a towering elm tree, it remains one of the most pivotal American moments that lacks a dedicated museum, Connors said.
August 31, 2003 |
For all his 80 years, there has been one constant in Joe Jordan's life: Cape May Point. Jordan wasn't born at the southern tip of the New Jersey Shore - he is from Philadelphia, where he lives during the winter - but his entire life, he has spent the summer at Cape May Point. "Like a lot of residents here, I've always loved the area and have been fascinated by it," said Jordan, whose curiosity about his Victorian cottage on Cape Avenue - he's the third generation to live there - prompted him to research the borough's past.
March 23, 2007 |
Penelope Hartshorne Batcheler, 78, the only woman on the team of historic preservationists who restored Independence Hall in the 1960s - an undertaking that led to the rebirth of the historical district - died of a stroke yesterday at Pennsylvania Hospital. She collapsed Saturday while cleaning ice off her car parked behind her Society Hill home. "Penny had a skilled, determined passion for researching architectural historical details," said John Milner, an architect and member of the National Park Service team in the 1960s.
January 29, 2015 |
The white house on Main Street is falling down. Its back porch is unstable, and its windows are broken. Inside, the walls are decaying and the floors are covered in debris. John Haigis sees past the blight of the 19th-century house. "It has character," said Haigis, president of Darby Borough's Historical Commission. Home to the oldest continually operating free library in the United States and a Quaker meeting house that dates to 1805, Darby is rich in history. But the small Delaware County borough is not rich in resources.
July 6, 1996
THE MALL PLANS: A GREAT CHANCE, OR SELLING SYMBOLS? The Independence Mall plan put forward by Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown (Inquirer, July 2) is Philadelphia's best chance in a generation to make itself work for visitors and residents alike. We will continue to hear quibbles and suggestions from other architects, but that is par for the course. There is no single best way to solve any architectural problem, and opinions will always vary. The diversity of views should not distract the Park Service, the Pew Charitable Trusts, or anyone else from supporting and creating the Gateway Visitors' Center on the Mall at Market Street.