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“Adaptive reuse at its best” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Education Center

Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Education Center
640 Waterworks Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19130
+1 215-685-0723
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Ranked #80 of 555 things to do in Philadelphia
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Attraction details
Owner description: Discover. Connect. Act. Nation's first public water supply system. Global tourist attraction. Showing the public how to be better water resource stewards. Come downstairs to visit one of Philadelphia's hidden gems. Best of all, we are free and open to the public six days a week. The mission of Fairmount Water Works is to foster stewardship of our shared resources by encouraging informed decisions about the use of land and water.
Trenton, New Jersey
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
31 attraction reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Adaptive reuse at its best”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

Yellow fever epidemics in the late 18th century convinced Philadelphia to build a state of the art municipal water system early in the 19th century. Set above the Schuylkill River, this neoclassical building was the pump house, which remained in use for almost a century. Now, with its exterior restored and interior shared between an interactive interpretive center and a restaurant with gorgeous views, it's once again a tourist attraction. Well worth a visit, it's a short walk from the Philadelphia Art Museum.

Visited March 2012
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34 reviews from our community

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Pennsy
Top Contributor
142 reviews 142 reviews
53 attraction reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Great learning experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

Philadelphia has invested a lot of time adnmoney into this place. The facililty itself is steeped in history and the program they have developed really is facinating about how water useage has evolved.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia
Top Contributor
145 reviews 145 reviews
37 attraction reviews
Reviews in 52 cities Reviews in 52 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
“Wonderful water works”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2012

Incredibly interesting with such a beautiful view of the river and the city.
It has interactive exhibits and history. It is a lovely place to lunch or just to walk around. Plenty of free 2 hour parking.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PA
Top Contributor
119 reviews 119 reviews
15 attraction reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
“fascinating, educational and free”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2012

we read about this and actually walked about two miles from our hotel to see this place. It was well worth the walk. In addition to the museum in the lower part of this fantastic facility, there is a restaurant on the main level. (see our review of it also).

Several interactive igtems and a live camera on the fish ladder, with some previous videos.

Very good for children and all who want to learn to appreciate just how good our modern society has gotten over the years.

Visited October 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
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177 reviews 177 reviews
60 attraction reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
84 helpful votes 84 helpful votes
“Who Knew a Water Works Could Be So Beautiful?”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2012

We'd seen the pavilions and gazebos on a prior visit to the art museum, but couldn't figure out what they were for -- on this visit, we found out and were very glad we did. Don't neglect to take in the museum in the basement -- not only is it free, but you'll learn a lot about what it takes to bring water to a huge city (at the very least, take in the short documentary in the theater to give yourself some context about what you're seeing). Some marvelous photo opps on the balcony nearest the dam.

Visited September 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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