Philip A. Hart Plaza is a 14-acre plaza in the heart of downtown Detroit that is located alongside the Detroit River. It is named after Philip A. Hart, an influential U.S. Senator from Michigan who died in 1976. In addition to being used as the site of numerous festivals and open-air concerts, the plaza is also known for its beautiful monuments and scenic views of the Detroit River, the city of Windsor in neighboring Canada, and Belle Isle State Park, which is one of the city's most popular outdoor attractions.
Things to Do
- Visit the beautiful Gateway to Freedom International Memorial to the Underground Railroad, which depicts six fugitive slaves as they prepare to board a boat to go to Canada as well as a local resident who helped many slaves cross the Detroit River in order to gain their freedom.
- Check out the unique Horace E. Dodge and Son Memorial Fountain in the center of the plaza, which consists of two stainless steel legs joined by a ring with 300 water jets and 300 colorful lights that illuminate it.
- View Pylon, a stainless steel sculpture that was designed to resemble the double helix of DNA.
Philip A. Hart Plaza Insider Tips
- Don't miss the striking Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac Statue, a gift to the city on its 300th birthday that depicts the founder of Detroit.
- Attend one of the many local festivals and concerts held at the plaza each year, including the annual Detroit International Jazz Festival.
- Bring along a camera in order to take photos of the Detroit River as you walk along the plaza's promenade.