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Rittenhouse Square Park
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

  • client Friends of Rittenhouse Square
  • architect Bolender Architects
  • lighting designer 521 Atelier
  • photographer © Jeffrey Totaro 2014

Rit­ten­House Square is a beau­ti­ful, his­toric square in the middle of the city. It is the 100th anniver­sary of the park’s design and the Friends of Rit­ten­House Square, the non­profit that main­tains the park hired us for var­i­ous light­ing needs. One of the issues was addi­tional light­ing on an his­toric neo­clas­si­cal balustrade and we needed type II dis­tri­b­u­tion with no glare. Your fix­ture was the best designed with the color tem­per­a­ture, optics, small dis­crete head…really no other fix­ture came close for our needs. So, it’s a nice way to show that new fix­tures are applic­a­ble to even his­toric parks.”

  • Clau­dia Librett, design direc­tor of 521 Ate­lier

Rit­ten­house Square is one of the five orig­i­nal open-space parks planned by William Penn and his sur­veyor Thomas Holme during the late 17th cen­tury in cen­tral Philadel­phia. The park is widely con­sid­ered one of the finest urban public spaces in the United States. Orig­i­nally called South­west Square, Rit­ten­house Square was renamed in 1825 after David Rit­ten­house, a descen­dant of the first paper-maker in Philadel­phia, the German immi­grant William Rit­ten­house. William Rittenhouse’s orig­i­nal paper-mill site is known as Rit­ten­house­town, located in the rural set­ting of Fair­mount Park along Paper Mill Run. David Rit­ten­house was a clock­maker and friend of the Amer­i­can Rev­o­lu­tion, as well as a noted astronomer.

Today, the tree-filled park is sur­rounded by high rise res­i­dences, luxury apart­ments, an office tower, a few pop­u­lar restau­rants, a Barnes & Noble book­store, a Bar­neys, and a five-star hotel. Its green grasses and dozens of benches are pop­u­lar lunch-time des­ti­na­tions for res­i­dents and work­ers in Philadelphia’s Center City neigh­bor­hood, while its lion and goat stat­ues are pop­u­lar gath­er­ing spots for small chil­dren and their par­ents. The park is a pop­u­lar dog walk­ing des­ti­na­tion for area res­i­dents.

The beauty of the Park is due largely to the efforts of Friends of Rit­ten­house Square, a public-pri­vate part­ner­ship with Philadel­phia Parks & Recre­ation. Land­scap­ing, light­ing, restora­tion of foun­tains and fenc­ing — even the instal­la­tion and stock­ing of doggie-bag dis­pensers — are all projects of the Friends of Rit­ten­house Square. During 2013, the 100th anniver­sary of archi­tect Paul Cret’s redesign of the Square, the Friends of Rit­ten­house Square worked to raise record funds for a light­ing and preser­va­tion ini­tia­tive. Selux is proud to have been a part of the restora­tion of this his­toric park.

  • Discera 4 by Selux is available in two sizes and multiple lamping options, providing freedom of design. Suitable applications include pathways, local roads, parking areas, and general site lighting. The IDA-Approved "Dark Sky Friendly" performance provides safe, efficient lighting. Discera 4 is also available as a solar LED fixture for off-grid lighting needs.
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