Railroad

de Luxe. extra fine. extra fast.  extra fare. Inside the deep, atmospheric, and deeply atmospheric, Inside Llewyn Davis, written and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, is a memorable scene at Abraham Lincoln ‘Oasis’ Fred Harvey restaurant on, make that over, the Tri-State Tollway in South Holland, Illinois.  Set in the ’60′s it’s a USA that left the […]

  ‘The actual roadbeds, and the wonderful trains moving over them are all objects of the highest sort of organic beauty, the beauty which comes from the perfection of form to use’. -James Sturgis Pray.   THE SERVICE  which the railroad is capable of performing in the development of horticultural taste and knowledge is considerable. […]

While others rail on with fundraising for some Rail Park “Phase 1 Maintenance Fund,” one day they disingenuously claim is “slated for construction in July 2014″ then on a following day they describe merely as a “proposed park,”  VIADUCTgreene remains steady as founded, genuine,  grounded- in the Garden, not on some Fantastically Phased Parkpie in the Sky. VIADUCTgreene remains steady as founded, honing […]

November 22, 2013 was a bright shiny day along the VIADUCTgreene. Another revealing  Saturday sidetour. We’ve been clear that Philadelphia isn’t New York and the VIADUCTgreene corridor isn’t about becoming New York’s High Line, as we stated  from our earliest postings. We’ve been clear that we believe that no post-industrial place recreated as civic space […]

originally published on the VIADUCTgreene blog on Sept. 3, 2013 “PARK” Infrastructure. Knowing well that making a gardenpark utilizing disuse and abandonment of civic infrastructure while celebrating and narrating Philadelphia’s great place in creating so much of the region’s and the world’s civic infrastructure requires a connsumate intelligence about those infrastructures. No provincial myopia allowed. Knowing well […]

  P&R presidents Franklin Gowen and Archibald Angus McLeod were features in our previous ‘mad men and their big ideas’ posts. Between the two them was the greatest mad man of the three – nabob and true robber baron, Austin Corbin.  His NYTimes obituary in June 1896 hardly lists his interest in our P&R, so eclipsed by […]

 The above view looks southeast from above the then under construction Philadelphia Museum of Art down Pennsylvania Avenue. There’s no evidence of construction at the 1929 Rodin Museum; same with the 1925 Philadelphia & Reading Granary.  Thomas U. Walter’s Preston Retreat stands proud and will for four more decades.  Niles-Bement Pond  in the oval takes […]

                                Reading and rereading Planting, A New Perspective brings on certain euphoria.  Piet Oudolf and Noel Kingsbury raise planting design to what it seems only a very few practitioners and admirers know it to be – the greatest art form ever.  Now […]

Originally published April 19, 2013 on the VIADUCTgreene Blog.  Collected news HERE. AMC’s hit-series season six it’s 1966; wartime and suburban dystopia is having its effects. Season five finale had Peter Campbell getting hit in the face and thrown off his train to Greenwich. Conductor: I’m about to throw you off. Pete: Go ahead, you fat piece of crap. Conductor: I […]

Originally published April 17 at the VIADUCTgreene blog from the Lewiston, Maine Evening Journal, Tuesday November 15, 1892 PRESIDENT MCLEOD IN BOSTON – He arrives There This Morning in His Private Car To Look Over Matters.  Boston, Nov 15 - President McLeod of the Boston & Maine and the Philadelphia & Reading Railroad arrived in Boston this […]

  Collected  News  Here VIADUCTgreene creates a garden of intersecting culture and wildness.  Earlier posts romanced about sleeping cars rolling over the viaductgreene from Reading’s great victorian trainshed to points far and wide.  About the time you’d be going to sleep you’d most likely be along the Lehigh River on the Lehigh Valley Railroad and maybe, as […]

Collected News Here Seed catalogs, trade shows, winter gardening.  The business of gardening rumbles reliably as all those trains once did into Philadelphia’s Victorian stations and terminals. And so much relates.  The last 1.1.2103 blog post related Philadelphia’s gilded, gritty and authentic, Victorian “Age of the Great Machine” and the product of its arts, fine and […]

Collected News Here The Mummers proceeded up Broad Street to the new City Hall, where the judging took place, and then north to Girard Avenue…. “…at 10:00 a.m. on January 1, 1901, the first organized Mummers Parade got underway from the corner of Reed and Broad Streets, with the newly established Fancy Division leading off. The comics followed. The Mummers proceeded up Broad Street to the new City Hall, […]

December 3.   75  Years Ago.  -it spans the miles with the effortless ease of an eagle in its flight. This week’s diamond and gold anniversary of Reading’s Stainless Steel Streamlined Train deserves note.  Philadelphia designed, and Philadelphia built. The Reading Train was the first light-weight, stainless steel, streamlined , air-conditioned train to serve Philadelphia […]

I suppose it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that Reading International’s scrappers returned last week to snatch away the rest of the 9th Street Branch rails so they can be made into something else.  Almost a tease, they had left the site in the spring, leaving infrastructure north of Noble Street and with it, […]

  STEELTON, PA.  three miles south of Harrisburg. along the Susquehanna River. view looks South Rolled the 9th Street Branch Rails. Located along the Main Line of Public Works, it’s difficult to realize that in 1866 there were but six families living in the territory now included in the borough. The land upon which the steelworks […]

                          When I saw palm trees along 20th Street last Spring I rolled my eyes.  Then I read the PHS news of the 2012 Flower Show theme, Hawaii: Islands of Aloha!   I love the flower show.  It’s about all we have left of anything Exposition like. […]

                        February 23, 2012… Philadelphia. 60°  We are stardust. We are golden. And we’ve got to get ourselves back to the to the Garden. Edgar Allan Poe lived in Philadelphia from 1838-44. He wrote his finest work here. He lived a just a couple of blocks from ViaductGreene’s […]

                                    1777.Autumn. despite a mighty defense along the Brandywine at Chadds Ford, the British Army under General William Howe occupies Philadelphia. the Continental Congress has fled to Lancaster, then York.  On December 17, under the command of General […]

                                Hidden City Philadelphia’s website is really amazing.  Back in October when we were busy with Design Philadelphia events, they posted a neat Ethan Wallace piece about the single extant coalyard building on N. 13th Street.  Inside, a treasure trove of […]

VIADUCTgreene creates a garden of intersecting culture and wildness along the soaring and submersive landscape infrastructure that is the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad 9th Street and City Branches. All the wonderful talk and action leading toward the Spring Garden Street Greenway/East Coast Greenway encourages another look at this historic, exciting and captivating intersection. In Spring Garden we mentioned history […]

“I was becoming increasingly fascinated by the subtle shifts between what was real and what wasn’t. For example, our locomotives were true to the prototype in appearance and capable of pulling cars along tracks and climbing grades, but they didn’t run like real engines at all.  Inside their bodies were electric motors.  I wanted locomotives and […]

“IT is a road built for the future as well as the present.” ….Below Port Clinton we pass into a tunnel.  While immersed in the gloom, recall the advice here given to look to the right immediately upon emerging.  You will be rewarded by a view of a square and massive rock jutting outward into […]