Portal to the Point

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (2011)


Transitioning through the portal from the city-side of the park one engages a terrain transformed with new constructed features, land forms, and historic elements. In an effort to further clarify and reconfigure the existing highway infrastructure, a new structure, a canopy fountain, is integrated adjacent to the elevated pedestrian way at the highway. The elliptical canopy distributes water from above and redirects water runoff from the highway into the new park wetland areas. Set in juxtaposition to the historic Block House, the fountain activates a plaza constructed in place of the removed Fort Pitt museum. Between the portal and the point fountain, the space of the great lawn is re-defined by new grade change that occurs at the marking of the historic fort – Fort Duquesne. Upper terrace grading tilts the upper plain slightly back toward the City. The new belvedere wall gives architectural definition to the landscape while enabling an overlook of the point.