Arts and Entertainment Trail to Be Part of Downtown Phoenixville Development

Phoenix Steel Site developer Manny DeMutis recently presented to the Phoenixville Planning Commission a plan to improve the current Schuylkill River Trail located next to the proposed downtown development. The seven-acre site is currently being reviewed by the Planning Commission as downtown infill development, which will consist of 85 thousand square feet of retail, 275 apartments, and 30 thousand square feet of office space.

The plan that DeMutis presented would incorporate amenities to complement the trail plan. “The trail amenities will be a integral part of the development,” DeMutis said. “It is important to the project to have the retail located next to the trail be integrated into the festival atmosphere created by the development. We are going to create a trail destination with unique shops and food establishments located along the trail.”

Incorporated into the plan are the following:

• 42” high Mural Stage with 10 flagpoles

• 5,400 sf of decorative brick paving surrounding the stage

• 2 gateway entrances for both vehicles and pedestrians

• 3 French Creek overlooks

• 1 pedestrian access to the French Creek

• Ornamental Landscaping and lighting at each entrance

• 900 feet of new ornamental railing along the French Creek promenade

• 1,300 square foot café area for alfresco dining plus on street alfresco dining

• 24 ornamental cast iron streetlights

• 12,500 sf of locally sources brick paving

• Over 46 street trees

• 37 on street parking spaces

• 12’ wide 900’ long pedestrian path

The plans call for the 900-foot segment of the trail to be enhanced by two gateways that will define the area, which will become the arts and entertainment portion of the trail.  The area will serve as a festival marketplace as the stores along located on the new street which abuts to the trail will be marketed to artisans and crafts people.  The area will serve as a destination for those along the trail.

The informal presentation by DeMutis was lauded by some of the planning commission members. “We have a lot of work to do. We want to get planning commission input.  This is not a one way street, what we build needs to be a credit to the community… We are committed to that…” DeMutis told members.