Building Materials

PHOTO CREDIT: ©OLIN / Sahar Coston-Hardy

Nearly 100,000 square feet of beautiful, finely carved and crafted granite masonry was used throughout the park’s exterior, including paving, walls and benches.

In particular, the Mesabi Black® granite provided an ideal background to the almost bluish tones of City Hall’s granite, limestone and marble exterior.

The Mesabi Black® fountain area reflects the beauty of City Hall when the waters are inactive. When active, the fountain draws children from across Philadelphia to splash in its waters.

The 2-inch-thick pavers in the plaza area have varying lengths and widths, with the most common paver measuring 3 feet long by 1.5 feet wide. The majority of pavers feature a Diamond® 10 and a Diamond 300 finish for pavers around the benches. According to the design team, the slightly roughened Diamond 300 texture surrounding the benches is a design element indicating to pedestrians they’re approaching a bench.

The 14 large, curvilinear benches along the plaza area are constructed of granite veneer and capstones of solid granite in Diamond 8 finish. In total, 6,500 square feet of Woodbury granite was used for the benches. According to the design team, the benches and their smooth, curvilinear forms are designed to respond to the changes in grade upon entering the plaza. As park visitors travel up and down the plaza, the benches curve and hold a grade in a way that calls to mind a giant a balustrade on a stair. The benches’ beautiful curved forms change constantly in radius in both height and width – a modern version of stonework from generations past. Benches and capstones were installed with cranes, due to their large size.

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