Philadelphia's Lost Waterfront
Festival Pier and Reading Railroad
The parking lots on your right are Piers 24 and 27. Together, they make up Festival Pier. Keep going past it and I'll tell you a bit about it's history.
The Reading Railroad’s one-time rail yard was on the left, across Columbus Blvd. It is now a land bank hosting a self-storage firm.
Freight traffic diminished for the railroad in the 1950s and had stopped completely by the 1970s. A fire destroyed Pier 27 in the morning of August 31st, 1972. Firefighters, some on fireboats, worked hard to prevent the blaze from spreading to Piers 25 and 24. They succeeded, but Pier 24 itself burned less than a year later. A dazzling inferno ripped though it on July 7, 1973, leaving the place fully leveled. Arson was suspected in both cases.
Today, Festival Pier is a recreational venue where music concerts and other entertainment events are held.