The Failure of Commercial Renewal 

Dedication of Lancaster Square

On Sept. 25, 1971, U. S. Senator Hugh Scott (standing at podium on concrete stairway) presided over the dedication of Lancaster Square. This "dramatic redevelopment of a one time area of obsolescence," he declared, "is a showplace of design with dramatic firsts." Scott predicted that the successful completion of the square inaugurated "the beginning of a plan that will make Lancaster second to none in its urban renewal." This photograph is of the west side of the block: note the Chestnut Street Post Office visible through Gruen's concrete superstructure. Courtesy, Buchart-Horn, Inc./BASCO Associates, Ltd., Lancaster and York, Pa.

The Demise of Lancaster Square

An aerial photograph taken in late 1970 reveals the Gruen superstructure nearing completion and the Prince Street Parking Garage (completed 1971) under construction. Much of the west block remained vacant until Armstrong World Industries and National Central Bank (CoreStates/Hamilton Bank) agreed to relocate there in the mid-1970s. Prior to that construction, however, the Redevelopment Authority demolished the concrete superstructure defining the west block of Lancaster Square. Photographs by Ed Sachs,c. Nov. 1970, Dec. 17, 1974, and June 4, 1976. Courtesy, Lancaster Newspapers, Inc.

North Queen Street, 1965
Buchart Plans for North Queen Street, 1962
The Demolition of North Queen Street
Victor Gruen's Plans for a New Commercial Center
Rebuilding North Queen Street

Part IV: New Neighborhoods for Old

Urban Renewal in Retrospect