Greater Harrisburg's Community Magazine

Harristown to swap out atrium clock for larger stage, new meeting space in Strawberry Square

A rendering of the new stage and meeting space in Strawberry Square (image courtesy Chris Dawson Architect [CDA])

Strawberry Square soon will have a different look and sound, with a plan to ring out its elaborate clock and usher in new meeting and entertainment space.

Harristown Enterprises on Wednesday said that it plans to remove the multi-story “Chockablock Clock” and replace it with a first-floor stage and second-floor cantilevered meeting room.

“We will miss the ball machine clock as a long-time feature of Strawberry Square, but our ability to repair and maintain it has become more challenging over the years,” said Brad Jones, president of Harristown, which owns the large, mixed-used building in downtown Harrisburg.

The clock, an audio-kinetic ball machine, was designed by George Rhoads and installed in the Strawberry Square atrium in 1988. Within the 40-foot tower, numerous balls run through a maze and activate a series of sound and motion devices.

In its place, Harristown will construct a larger stage, which will allow the atrium to be used for a wider variety of events.

“As our tenants have changed over time, we expect the enhanced stage area will be much more welcoming to performers and events of all types,” Jones said.

The clock’s removal also will allow Harristown to construct new, second-floor meeting space, which will jut out over the central portion of the enclosed atrium.

“We will be creating a unique, open-air conference and meeting room on the second floor, which will enhance our ability to attract professionals and allow our existing tenants—and others needing conference space—to use a very special and exciting new place which will showcase this wonderful downtown hub of education and innovation,” Jones said.

According to Harristown, the project will begin this fall and should be completed by the end of the year. It is being designed by Chris Dawson of Harrisburg-based CDA and built by Pyramid Construction.

For more information on Strawberry Square, visit their website.

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