The original pocket park was created to cover a proposed stormwater best management practice that was built in an urban parking lot. Surrounded by alleys open to traffic, the original park was graded to fit between them and, as a result, had a fairly steep slope that rendered it useless for any active use.
After the project team vacated two of the alleys, RETTEW regraded the lot to create a flat area of decorative pavers and lawn surrounded by landscaping beds. The pavers connect to infinity stairs along the main alley and provide an accessible route through the park, connecting to the surrounding buildings that open the park to their tenants and employees.
To activate the space, curved wooden benches follow the arcs of the main lawn area and direct users’ views toward the lawn as well as the small stage area and seasonal ping pong table on one side. Fully lit with architectural lighting, the park is also wired for sound to support the outdoor movie screen mounted on an adjacent parking deck. Movie nights are a popular feature because the flat lawn area encourages people to bring blankets and enjoy the outdoor entertainment afforded by this connector park in downtown Allentown.