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Plaza de Panama, Balboa Park

Plaza de Panama, Balboa Park

San Diego
CA
USA
 (
 - 
2014
)

Southwest Airlines and PPS partnered with the Balboa Park Conservancy to activate the Plaza de Panama at the very heart of Balboa Park. The Plaza’s location is unbeatable—it sits at the pedestrian gateway along El Prado, the main boulevard, and is surrounded on all sides by cultural institutions and attractions, including the San Diego Museum of Art, Sculpture Court Café, Mingei International Museum, The Timken Museum of Art, and the park visitor center. Yet despite its prime setting, the Plaza was a largely empty expanse, having recently been converted from a parking lot.

In response to valuable input from stakeholders, Heart of the Community enhanced the Plaza so that it now caters to the millions of annual guests to Balboa Park and the institutions it houses. Improvements include new amenities like tables, chairs, umbrellas, benches, games, and an “outdoor living room” and lawn for lounging. Specially-crafted presentation panels allow the adjacent museums to have their collections and exhibits spill outside in to the public realm. Ample open space has been preserved to host performances and special events from the city at large. 

The Plaza showcases and celebrates the diverse identity of the Balboa Park community and San Diego, providing a place for residents and visitors to relax and soak in the incredible civic treasure all around them. As Balboa Park celebrates the 100th anniversary of the monumental 1915 Panama-California Exhibition, the additions to Plaza de Panama help elevate the Park as one of the world’s top destinations.

Project Client: 
Southwest Airlines
Plaza de Panama, Balboa Park
Plaza de Panama, Balboa Park
Plaza de Panama, Balboa Park
Plaza de Panama, Balboa Park
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Tessa Rosenberry
Learn about PPS's Three-pronged Approach to Drive Change