Northwest Philadelphia: A Surprise Around Every Corner
Northwest Philadelphia is culturally-rich, socioeconomically diverse, and – since the founding of Germantown – continues to this day to be a center of progressive activism. In fact, it was in Germantown that our country’s first abolitionist society was founded.
The hilly terrains of Manayunk and Roxborough boast the city’s highest elevation while evoking a distinctly European feel. Northwest Philadelphia was among the first areas of the city to be embraced by William Penn as an integral part of his vision of Philadelphia as a “Greene Country Towne.” The beauty of Northwest Philadelphia attracted the attention of literary personages such as Edgar Allan Poe and John Greenleaf Whittier.
Developed around the Schuylkill River and Wissahickon Creek and later Fairmount Park, Northwest Philadelphia is bound loosely by the Roosevelt Expressway to the south, Broad Street to the east, and the suburbs of Montgomery County to the north and west.
Education in Northwest Philadelphia
Northwest Philadelphia is awash with museums such as the Johnson House Historic Site and the Woodmere Art Museum. Budding artists spend their after school hours at the SplashLab Arts studio and the Allens Lane Art Center. In addition to the abounding parkland and playgrounds, Awbury Arboretum and The Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education have produced many a nature lover over the years.
The Architectural Wonderland that is Northwest Philadelphia
Architects like George Howe and Wilson Eyre set the tone for residences in the region. Howe’s High Hollow and Eyre’s Anglecot demonstrate the European and Beaux Arts influence on Chestnut Hill‘s architecture in the early part of the 20th century.
Close by are Manayunk and Roxborough’s modern condos intermingled with every style of free-standing home. If there was only one word to describe the indisputable attraction of the neighborhoods of Northwest Philadelphia – from the people to the businesses to the architecture to the nature life – that word would be “eclectic!”
A region known for its parks and green space
Fairmount Park is famous across the world for its more than 10,200 acres of protected public land and waterways. It also serves as the green spine of the Northwest, with the beloved 23 miles of Wissahickon Creek, one of 600 National Natural Landmarks of the United States, meandering through the parkland, with the last few miles running through a deep gorge.
The Schuylkill River is enveloped to the East by the famed Kelly Drive, so named for the famous family of Olympic rowers and Princess Grace of Monaco. The Martin Luther King or “West River Drive” hugs the west. Both scenic roads are bustling gathering spots for recreation, walking trails and bike paths, picnic areas, access to the Philadelphia Art Museum, and the iconic Boathouse Row.