Published on April 27 2013
On Saturday, DRWC unveiled plans for the redevelopment of Pier 53 at Washington Avenue Green into a new waterfront pier park. The project will complement and enhance the surrounding Washington Avenue Green park, and will focus on ecological enhancements, sensitivity to historical context, and visitor experience


The design for Pier 53 at Washington Avenue Green was developed as a design-build project by Applied Ecological Services  (AES) with several rounds of civic engagement.  The pier will be an extension of Washington Avenue Green, a new public space created on the Delaware in 2010 to serve as the northern anchor of a wetlands park and recreational trail system which will run south to Pier 70 (adjacent to Walmart/Super Fresh).  Washington Avenue Green has already attracted a stewardship group, the Friends of Washington Avenue Green, focused on maintaining and expanding the park. 

The pier project is estimated to cost $1.5 million and will be funded through DRWC capital funds and grants from the William Penn Foundation and the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.  The design for the pier will offer the following public amenities:

  • On-grade path that will allow visitors to reach the tip of the pier and get close enough to the water to touch it, an opportunity of intense interest to Friends of Washington Avenue Green.
  • Ecological enhancements including intertidal and riparian plantings, and innovative stabilization methods
  • Sensitivity to the historical context – repurposing of some of the materials of the site (both natural and man-made) into new park elements
  • Interpretive signage will relate the site’s history as the nation’s first navy yard and an immigration station where over 1 million entered the US.
  • Striking public art by artist Jody Pinto (see conceptual drawings below)