Allentown, PA / In Progress

LANTA Allentown Transportation Center Plaza

A new urban transit center

This newly redesigned bus terminal and streetscape – brought about through a tri-party partnership among LANTA, the Allentown Parking Authority, and developer City Center  – is a revivified center of activity in downtown Allentown. Omnes designed not only the LANTA plaza, but also its architectural centerpiece: an origami-inspired sculptural shelter pavilion. The shelter protects riders from the elements under a colorful, place-making gradient of panels moving from neon yellow to sky blue, creating an overhead undulating landscape. Above, the pavilion is topped by a green roof that captures rainwater that would otherwise be runoff, provides an elevated habitat, and brings interest to the view from the adjacent parking garage.

Omnes worked with transportation authorities to develop signage, A/V placement, and lighting design for the transit hub and streetscape. Panels and linear light fixtures emit a subtle glow that enlivens the space and celebrates LANTA’s branding. A new mural depicting native plants and hummingbirds activates the humdrum façade of the former Morning Call parking garage and introduces more pops of bright color. Native grasses and bright pink plantings punctuate the space to create lush gardens adjacent to the well-used plaza and streetscape. The second phase of the project, completed in Spring 2022, also includes a new north-south streetscape with bus pavilions, signage, and reconfigured bus bays. This intervention adds life and color back into the previously dull concrete landscape and brings a sense of safety and comfort to the street for all who pass through.

(Fourth Photograph down: Mark Buckwalter Photography, courtesy of RETTEW.)