The ills of the addition of gambling halls to our fair commonwealth have been well documented since they were legalized in 2004. And the efforts of representatives from nearby neighborhoods to halt the construction of the ill-advised Foxwoods casino in South Philadelphia speaks to the public’s clear understanding that casinos don’t exactly improve quality of life for surrounding communities. The existence of the Penn Treaty Special Services District, which uses money from Sugarhouse to improve the Fishtown, Northern Liberties, etc, shows that even the casinos themselves understand that their existence is somewhat of a drain on the local communities.
It turns out that the annual million dollar payment to the PTSSD isn’t the only positive Sugarhouse brings to the table. Yesterday, we found ourselves at the casino (for purely professional reasons, we assure you), and we discovered a public green space that we had heard of in the past, but had never seen in person. And you know what, it was kind of awesome.
North side, bike racks with the casino in the background
Hardscaped path next to a walking path
Walking path, surrounded by greenery
Something sunken in the river
View of the bridge in the distance
Sure, it’s only like a hundred yards long. And sure, it’s next to a hulking casino that figures to grow in the coming years. But for a moment, we were transported away from the clanging of the slot machines and the smell of cigarettes. The trees were leafy, the flowers were blooming, and the water almost looked inviting. Perhaps we’ve found a new spot to watch the fireworks on July 4th… See you there?