Monthly Event

FDR Park: A Resilient Vision for a Historic Park

This Event Has Passed


Thursday, June 9, 2022

10:00 AM - 11:30 AM


Missed it? Watch it HERE.


Today, as South Philadelphia’s population grows and recreation trends change, Philadelphia’s 348-acre, historic Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) Park is being reimagined to fulfill its promise as a critical piece of civic, public health, and ecological infrastructure. The park currently struggles with underfunding, deferred maintenance of historic assets and infrastructure, frequent flooding, and faces a hotter and wetter future due to climate change. The new master plan envisions a balance between nature, water, and active recreation by matching user’s needs with environmental opportunities in a constant calibration between ecology and culture to maximize public welfare and environmental health. The FDR Park of the future is a unique park that is flexible and functional, can adapt to changing conditions and remain resilient in the face of challenges, and is unified behind a community-supported vision for the future. FDR Park will serve as a local and national model for stormwater management and resilient design, showcasing low-impact development and green infrastructure projects. The ambitious recommendations in the master plan outline how FDR Park can become the first self-funding park in the city through a creative mix of revenue generated income and private / public partnerships. This plan leverages the power of parks to provide access to recreational opportunities, spur local economies, and protect Philadelphia from climate change.


Missed it? Watch it HERE.

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The Park at Penn's Landing

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The Philly Tree Plan: A Conversation With A City About Relationships to Trees

Archived | 2022-03-24

My Journey From Landscape Artist to Environmental Activist


Charles Neer


Charles Neer, ASLA, Senior Associate, leads WRT’s Parks and Open Space Practice. Charles’ view of landscape as a productive agent in the shaping of cities, countryside, and culture is informed by 20+ years of experience with urban landscapes, park master planning and design. Charles has served as the project manager for national park projects in Philadelphia, Louisville, Austin, and Roanoke including the FDR Park Master Plan and The Parklands of Floyds Fork. He has worked on various waterfronts, campus master plans and urban designs throughout the country including the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative – Washington D.C., the Principal Riverwalk in Des Moines, IA, and Dutch Kills Green, Queens, N.Y.   Charles has taught studios at the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University, is Board President of the Fairmount Community Development Corporation and is a Board Member of The McHarg Center for Urbanism and Ecology at the University of Pennsylvania. Charles is a member of the Urban Land Institute, City Parks Alliance, World Urban Parks, and the American Society of Landscape Architects.

Kathryn Ott Lovell

Kathryn Ott Lovell was appointed Commissioner of Philadelphia Parks & Recreation by Mayor Kenney in 2016. As Commissioner, Kathryn oversees 700 full-time employees, 2,700 part-time employees, 10,200 acres of land, 250 playgrounds, and thousands of programs and events throughout Philadelphia. 

 In 2017, Kathryn commissioned the first strategic plan for Philadelphia Parks & Recreation. The plan, Our Path to 2020, set in motion a trajectory toward an equitable and exceptional parks and recreation system that connects people to each other, to enriching experiences, and to the natural world. The plan emphasizes citizen-centric servic. and high-quality, relevant, and accessible programs.