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One Tank Trip: Race Street Pier

By Karin Mallett, Anchor / Reporter, KMallett@wfmz.com
Published On: Aug 17 2011 10:01:44 AM CDT
Updated On: Jun 01 2011 05:42:06 AM CDT

There's a new spot along the Delaware River waterfront to enjoy. It's a pier that juts out over the river, connecting Philadelphia to the water's edge.

PHILADELPHIA -

There's a new spot along the Delaware River waterfront to enjoy.

The Race Street Pier juts out over the river, connecting Philadelphia to the water's edge.

Instead of disguising the city, the newest public park embraces and celebrates Philadelphia.

"You're still in the city. You hear the New Jersey Transit going by, but you're as close to the river as you're going to get," said Laurie Heinerich, Delaware River Waterfront Corporation.

The railings lean in at a 65 degree angle for an unobstructed view.

The pier is a modern marvel with free 4G wireless technology, but it's design is also linked to the past. The original Race Street Pier, back in the late 1800s, had two levels: one for shipping and one for recreation.

Today, the pier's new design is known as "the slice".

Heinerich said it's to give visitors different perspectives.

There are two wharf drops that used to be used for shipping, to unload cargo. They were retrofitted and covered with a transparent metal grating so you can essentially walk over the water.

Every inch of the park was planned out, including the trees.

Since you don't get a lot of shade from new ones, the oaks planted in the park are already 10 years old.

They are surplus trees, originally cultivated by a nursery in New Jersey for the World Trade Center Memorial at Ground Zero in New York City. The ones in Philadelphia are the surplus.

"I hope it encourages people to come to the waterfront," said Heinerich.