In Logan Square, there are relatively few development opportunities to be found. Having been so well-established for decades, the neighborhood has few vacant properties and even less vacant land. So it should come as no surprise that a couple of developers looking to construct multi-unit developments find themselves having to demolish a couple of older buildings in order to accomplish the task at hand.
First, we look at the northwest corner of 21st & Race, where a former School District building is nearly gone. This structure had been a part of the Please Touch Museum, which moved to Memorial Hall a few years ago, but has sat vacant since the move. Last September, we told you about plans from Matzi Builder and Developers to build eight new ultra-high-end homes here, with list prices exceeding $1M. We don’t know what the homes will look like,…
In the last year plus, the teeny and easy to miss 2500 block of Montrose has seen two significant construction projects progress from start to finish. Back in October, we told you about a couple of homes under construction on the eastern end of this Devil’s Pocket block, from builder John McHugh. Those homes now appear to be finished, with one next door still incomplete. Earlier last year, we told you about three condo units that we going up on the western end of the block, pretty much touching the adjacent Veolia Plant and a series of what appear to be transformers. That project is also all done, from the looks of it.
Looking finished, with a third home still being completed
Turn the corner on this little block, however, and you’ll notice…
It’s amazing to consider that the Graduate Hospital neighborhood had over five-hundred vacant and/or blighted properties within its borders just fifteen years ago. Walking around the neighborhood today, you can go several blocks before stumbling upon such a structure, with the vast majority having been demolished and redeveloped or rehabbed in the last decade. We’d guess that only a couple dozen remain, and that number continues to shrink as the days roll by.
Two blighted homes that have bugged us for years can be found on the southwest corner of 17th & Montrose, immediately adjacent to the proposed Carpenter Green park that we told you about just a few days ago. And today we have some good news-
We’ve never been particularly fond of the aesthetic of Liberties Walk in Northern Liberties- it’s always felt a little too Disney to us. But we would, on the other hand, posit that this development has had a rather positive effect on the neighborhood, giving it a concentrated mixed-use corridor to go with the Piazza and offering several quality retail amenities over the years.
Shiny at night. Image from thejawn.com
View from the south, on Bodine Street
There’s no question that Liberties Walk spurred additional development on surrounding blocks. For example, the Stables project, located just to the north, will eventually swell to over two dozen modular homes. And just to the south, another significant residential project sprouted up a few years back. Many other one and two-off projects have also risen in the area, replacing blighted buildings or…
If you’ve ever travelled over the Ben Franklin Bridge and headed through town via 8th Street, you’ve surely noticed the terrible PPA parking garage that “arches over” 8th Street between Arch and Filbert. Its miserable aesthetic comes off even worse when you consider what it replaced when it was built in the mid-1960s.
8th and Arch in 1959
Philaphilia tells us that the construction of this monstrosity was actually celebrated in its time, as it made it much easier for suburban shoppers to park when visiting the adjacent Strawbridge’s or Lit Bros. department stores. Somehow, it looked a little less scary during the Johnson administration.
Right after it was finished
Over the years, however, this building has held up, shall we say, extremely poorly. Retail spaces on 8th Street have (understandably) struggled mightily,…
In Squirrel Hill, new improvements to a healthcare facility will coincide with demolition on the 4700 block of Chester Avenue. The Renaissance Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, a 123-bed short and long term care facility, will undergo improvements, and a vacant twin Victorian with a third floor exterior facade that resembles a Swiss chalet will soon be no more.
To be demolished
Currently being gutted
Renovations to the nursing home will include improvements to residential space and beautification of surrounding gardens. The property, which stretches between the Chester and Kingsessing Avenues, and is located next to the Chester Avenue Dog Park, was purchased by Nationwide Healthcare in January, according to the West Philly Local. According to public record, the price was over $4M.
View of the nursing home from the parking lot