Dangerous Northern Liberties intersection becomes site of new crosswalk mural

Northern Liberties residents came out to help paint a new mural at the intersection of 2nd and Laurel Streets over the weekend.
Northern Liberties residents came out to help paint a new mural at the intersection of 2nd and Laurel Streets over the weekend. Photo credit Hadas Kuznits/KYW Newsradio

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A dangerous Northern Liberties intersection became a little safer this weekend, thanks to a community art project.

Neighbors got together over the weekend to bring safety to the neighborhood through art, in the form of a crosswalk mural at the intersection of 2nd and Laurel Streets.

"This is going to bring some vibrancy right here into the heart of the commercial district," said Ann Lastuvka, with the Northern Liberties Business Improvement District.

But she admitted the crosswalk wasn't just for beauty's sake. "It also is pedestrian safety because it makes it very bright to see that cars, like, 'Hey, we got to stop,'" she said.

"This crosswalk is sort of part of the revitalization of 2nd Street that the Business Improvement District has taken on," said Danny Cappello, the mural's designer. His work was chosen from an open call for artists.

"There's been a lot of changes on 2nd Street over the years, just as long as I've lived here. There's been a lot of restaurants, new restaurants on the way, so it looks like there will be a lot of people walking on this crosswalk."

Since he's also a neighbor, he plans to be one of those people.

"This is, like, the coolest thing that I could imagine," he gushed. "I've always made community art projects. I want it to be the backbone of my art-making practice and this is like the first large scale mural I'm ever doing, so I am super-excited about it."

In addition to the community crosswalk project, there was also a mobile vaccination clinic set up nearby.

"It definitely is like a sign of things to come," said Lastuvka. "It's definitely a bright side of things."

Featured Image Photo Credit: Hadas Kuznits/KYW Newsradio