Germantown’s Flying Horse Center showcases street art
The Flying Horse Center in Germantown is best known for its industrial reuse story. In 2010, the Community Design Collaborative chose the 85-year-old parking garage, which had been transformed into a multi-use community center, as a model of adaptive reuse in its Retooling Industrial Sites exhibit.
With most of the 55,000-square-foot facility leased and the final phase of office flex space being built, owner Stan Smith is once again using the hulking structure as a leading example of how to combat some of Philly’s chronic urban woes. This time he’s taking on another form of neighborhood blight: graffiti. In a page out of Jane Golden’s playbook, he’s allowing local artists to use portions of the Flying Horse Center’s facade as a showcase for street art.
“The building gets so much exposure because of its central location right next to the train stop,” explains Smith. “The graffiti that plagued the building was sending the wrong message. It made me mad.”