Historic Arsenal Park is located between 40th and 39th Streets to the north and south, and Penn Avenue and Butler Street to the east and west. It is the largest and most central community park within the neighborhood of Lawrenceville and serves multiple neighborhoods. The park is and will be used by people of all ages and abilities, for everyday recreation, education programs, markets, and community events. The neighboring Arsenal Schools include three age levels: preschool (ages 3-5), elementary school (ages 5-12) and middle school (ages 12-14); the play/learning environments will be designed to meet the needs of these three groups.

The Arsenal Park Master Plan provided the conceptual basis for design work. The plan addresses concerns and requests articulated by community members dating to 2012, when Friends of Arsenal Park, a group of dedicated residents and users, organized to transform a deteriorating outdoor space into a meaningful, well-used public gathering place. The resulting Master Plan intertwines historical, ecological, educational and recreational aspects of this site to create a public space that will be used by residents, educators and their students, community organizations, and municipal entities.

The overarching goal of the design is to respectfully integrate new facilities with restored historic structures, so park users may enjoy year-round recreational and educational use and universal access to ensure the park is a vital part of the community. The design will address:

  • Pedestrian connection between school building and Arsenal Park
  • Safe and inviting community access at 40th Street and Davison Street intersection/crossing
  • Provide an ADA accessible path from 40th and Davison entrance to the Mall
  • Restoration of historic stone wall segment from school alley to 40th Street Mall entrance
  • Imaginative playground
  • Picnic shelter/outdoor classroom with restroom
  • Pedestrian lighting and electrical infrastructure for events
  • Park amenities, including site furnishings and signage
  • Integrated stormwater management

Arsenal Park is named for the historic Allegheny Arsenal which occupied this site and beyond from 1812 until 1911, when it formally became a City park. Extant historic features include the Powder Magazine, designed by Henry Latrobe, and the stone walls surrounding the park. A historic cannon (not original to the Arsenal) should be incorporated into the park design. A detailed history of the cultural landscape may be found in the Master Plan report.

Sensitive treatment of the park’s historic assets and existing tree canopy is of paramount importance. The design of the new picnic shelter shall respect and be compatible with the historic architecture of the nearby Powder Magazine, the park’s only remaining building from the Allegheny Arsenal.

In order to adhere to social distancing guidelines and maintain equitable public input, the City of Pittsburgh is utilizing online engagement tools. Materials will be posted as they are developed and will be mobile-friendly. All virtual meetings will be recorded and posted to the website.

Thank you for your patience as we continue to roll out improvements that address issues around the digital divide.

Project Team:

  • Pashek + MTR / Landscape Architecture
  • Ingrid Kanics Inclusive Design / Accessibility
  • Christine Davis Consultants / Archaeology
  • Sci-Tek Consultants / Survey and Civil
  • Graves Design Group / Architecture
  • Santangelo & Lindsay / Lighting
  • Alpine Allegheny / Cost Estimating

Community Partners:

  • Lawrenceville United
  • Lawrenceville Corporation
  • Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
  • Pittsburgh Public Schools
  • Lawrenceville Historic Society
  • Friends of Arsenal Park
  • Tree Pittsburgh
  • Carnegie Library
  • Lawrenceville Playgroup
  • Stephen Foster Community Center
  • Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
  • Lawrenceville Family Care Connection
  • York Commons
  • Canterbury Place
  • 9th Ward Youth Association
  • Allegheny County Health Department
  • Three Rivers Wet Weather
  • PWSA
  • Council District 7
  • The Office of State Rep. Adam Ravenstahl
  • The Office of State Rep. Sara Innamorato
  • The Office of State Sen. Wayne Fontana
  • Department of Public Works
  • Department of City Planning
  • City Forestry
  • The Office of Mayor Peduto
  • Lawrenceville Stakeholders
  • Better Streets Lawrenceville
  • Bike Pittsburgh
  • Historic Review Commission
  • Stonewall Kickball
  • Young Preservationists Association
  • Preservation Pittsburgh
  • Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Association