We’ve had plenty of coverage of Ridge Avenue in Francisville over the past couple of years, mostly sharing info about vacant land and blighted (and tax delinquent) properties. One major project we’ve seen come about on Ridge of late is the huge Project H.O.M.E. development on the 1500 block, which is still being framed out. Today we have a smaller but still important project to bring to your attention, this time on the 1600 block.
We noticed a zoning notice at 1608 Ridge Ave. a couple of weeks ago, and just realized that the project is going before the ZBA this week. Proposed for this currently vacant lot is a new mixed-use building with bays and balconies, a community center on the first floor, and twelve residential units. We can only imagine that these will be rental units, and we would…
Bikers in Spring Garden, Francisville, and Fairmount will have a safer ride this spring as bike lanes are likely coming to Fairmount Avenue between Broad Street and Pennsylvania Avenue.
Community opinion was collected during the last three months, according to Nicholas Mirra, communications coordinator for the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia. That includes members of the Fairmount Civic Association, Spring Garden Community Development Corporation and Francisville Neighborhood Development Corporation. The next step is a City Council review.
Fairmount from 25th St
The City’s current Pedestrian and Bicycle Plan represents an effort to connect the city through a series of trails and bike lanes as part of the Phila2035 initiative. It measures street traffic and highlights popular pedestrian and bicycling areas, making suggestions for appropriate bike path locations. But “the reality [of those suggestions] is more difficult,” said Mirra. That reality includes issues like neighborhood input and…
Along North Broad Street, things are looking better than they have in decades, and more changes are coming. There’s construction near Temple, numerous condo and apartment conversions, and the award-winning Osteria. It’s as if Broad Street blight, once as rampant as morning traffic, has become a Broad Street boom.
The west side of the 800 block of North Broad, which stretches Parrish to Brown Streets, serves as an example of what’s happening. New business activity is taking place on the block in the coming months, including the opening of Dulce Lounge (812 N. Broad) and the renovation of Flambo Caribbean Restaurant (820 N. Broad).
800 block of North Broad
“Broad Street is coming up,” said Barbara Kelley, of the Francisville Neighborhood Development Corporation (FNDC).
Its revitalization is anchored by Bart Blatstein’s
Down the road from the hub of Francisville development at 19th & Poplar that we’ve covered the past month, a three-story property is under construction just north of Fairmount Avenue, next to the City’s Employee Medical Services Building.
Some neighbors raised concerns about the size and façade of the building at 712 N. 19th St., a duplex being constructed by owner Tom McTaggart, who will live in one unit and rent the other, according to Barbara Kelley of the Francisville Neighborhood Development Corporation (FNDC). But the owner has obtained all necessary permits, and the project was allowed by right, according to Kelley.
The building will be the only structure on the west side of the block larger than one-story, and when purchased, this September for $165K, was itself a one-story structure similar…
As recently as June, an empty though potentially-charming church stood at 19th and Poplar Sts. Over the summer it was razed, and now a vacant lot bids hello to passersby in Francisville.
A church no more
Construction on six homes will begin at the site as early as the end of this year, according to Penelope Giles, founder and executive director of the Francisville Neighborhood Development Corporation (FNDC).
Before construction begins however, developers will have to re-present site plans to the members of the FNDC. Though plans had been approved about a year and a half ago, the window of time that legitimizes those approvals has passed, according to Giles.
“It doesn’t seem unrealistic,” Giles said about developers coming before the association and then breaking ground in the few months remaining in…