How did the banks of the Schuylkill go from an abandoned industrial wasteland to become the award-winning park and trail they are today? The Schuylkill River revival is the story of those who thought to reclaim the lower tidal Schuylkill River and its banks from its once important but then abandoned past. Speaker John Randolph is foremost amongst those whose efforts have so enriched our lives.
There can be no doubt that the Schuylkill River is a Philadelphia treasure. It is an oasis waterway through the urban core with greenery to the north, new commercial and residential development in the middle and more greenery to the south. And with a new pedestrian path it has become a favorite respite for joggers and cyclists.
But did you know that the river was once a major transportation corridor for industrial development along its banks and once the industry left, it became an unattractive wasteland and urban eyesore. Just how did the river evolve into what we enjoy today?
Our speaker, John Randolph, took us through the interesting history of the Schuylkill River and how true visionaries saw a diamond in the rough and took action to give the river a second life. Mr. Randolph has over forty years of experience in the field of planning and project development. He is Founder and former President of the Schuylkill River Development Council. a non-profit public-private partnership dedicated to the revitalization of the tidal Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. He has a Master’s of Architecture, Princeton University, and a B.A. in Architecture, University of Pennsylvania.