American Water Resources Association

AWRA Social Networking Event, Including a Presentation on A History of Topographical Change in Philadelphia

  • 28 Mar 2012
  • 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
  • Ladder Fifteen - 1528 Sansom Street, Philadelphia PA
  • 149


Registration is closed
AWRA Social Networking Event

From Creek to Sewer: A History of Topographical Change in Philadelphia

Presented by


Historical Consultant
Philadelphia Water Department

As you walk on many of Philadelphia’s sidewalks, beneath your feet is a hidden world of streams that once crisscrossed the city. Join us on Wednesday, August 18 for a fascinating illustrated lecture that will uncover part of Philadelphia’s history that few people ever think about – the drastic changes made in Philadelphia’s landscape since its founding in 1682. Historian and archivist Adam Levine has been digging into the history of the city’s sewers and drainage systems since 1998, and his talk will focus on the systematic obliteration of hundreds of miles of surface streams. Buried deep underground in pipes as large as 20 feet in diameter, these former streams – some of which had watersheds that covered thousands of acres – became main drainage arteries in the city’s 3,000 mile sewer system. These massive alterations to the landscape, undertaken over two centuries, have environmental repercussions that are still being felt today. This lecture is guaranteed to reveal a side of the Philadelphia you have never seen, and change the way you think about cities in general.  

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