Historic Philadelphia Site Begins Critical Steps Toward Revitalization

Eastern State Penitentiary

Eastern State Penitentiary - Visitor's Center Phase 1


Eastern State Penitentiary’s renovations to the historic site located on Fairmount Avenue near Center City Philadelphia are just one step along a journey to complete the visionary 10-year Master Plan. This project laid the foundation for a new all-inclusive Visitor’s Center. The project revitalizes the site and makes it more accessible to Philadelphia’s citizens and all the visitors they receive from around the world. 

CEDARVILLE Engineering was engaged, as part of a multi-disciplinary team, to provide civil and site design, as well as, to support the project during construction. The proposed Visitor Center would require a new water service, sanitary service, and ADA accessibility. Additionally, Eastern State partnered with the Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) and received grant funds for a retrofit of the stormwater system. The multidisciplinary team consisted of historic preservationists, architects, mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, contractors, fabricators, and the Eastern State staff. 

CEDARVILLE was challenged in laying out utilities and designing a stormwater system that met current regulations and standards, all while preserving the history and working around existing infrastructure. Large diameter storm sewers, necessary to convey run-off from the ever-increasing storm events, had to be placed to avoid conflicts with the many existing and proposed site utilities. The stormwater retrofit system consists of two sub-surface infiltration basins shaped to fit the available space and several hundred feet of conveyance piping with associated inlets. The basins now capture and ‘treat’ over 22,000 gallons of stormwater run-off and reduces the impact to the overloaded City sewers during rain events. 

Visitors to the site, of course, will not see the hundreds of feet of buried pipes and infrastructure, but will be greeted by newly graded, ADA accessible, site with new specially selected concrete pathways that respect and reflect the site’s history. Additional stair wells, ramps, lights, benches, and restrooms now provide greater accessibility for all visitors to this amazing and historical site! 


  • Infiltration Testing  
  • Environmental Site Assessment 
  • Site Design and Utility Layout 
  • Construction Administration 


  • Client: Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site 
  • Address: 2027 Fairmount Ave. Philadelphia, PA 19130 
  • Date Completed: 2020 

Also see: Eastern State Penitentiary: Geospatial

If you are looking for an engineering company that respects client needs, can work as part of a diverse team, and meet challenging goals; please call us at 610-705-4500 or email info@cedarvilleeng.com. 

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Address: CEDARVILLE Engineering Group, LLC 159 E. High Street, Suite 500 Pottstown, PA 19464 Phone: 610-705-4500 Fax: 610-705-4900 info@cedarvilleeng.com

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CEDARVILLE Engineering Group, LLC (CEG)
159 E. High Street, Suite 500, Pottstown, PA 19464
P:610-705-4500 F: 610-705-4900
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