Naked Philly

Half a block from Girard Avenue

A reader recently reached out and gave us the heads up that a new home has arrived on the northwest corner of 29th & Harper, on a property that's been vacant for many years. So we moseyed up there to take a peek. Here, check out the before and after shots:

In the past
Home has arrived on the scene

Developers bought this lot earlier this year for $72.5K and we're pretty sure they had to take it through the zoning process since it's zoned for commercial use. Sure, it's just a few doors down from Girard Avenue, but if you consider the block to the west, a residential use is a no-brainer.

First phase was a long time ago

Last week, we had a great opportunity to get an insider's look of a current preservation-minded redevelopment project in Manayunk: Shurs Lane Mills at 410 Shurs Lane. This property is a two-building complex that was built to house a textile mill in 1876 by T. Kentworthy and (his) Brother. According to a survey taken in 1885, the duo of buildings were producing carpet yarns and employing about 139 people, the majority of which seem to have been children or teenagers.

Drawing included in the 1885 survey, courtesy of the Free Library of Philadelphia

One of the buildings was rehabbed into condos a little less than a decade ago. After sitting derelict for years, apparently caught in some kind of tangled litigation process, the second building is finally being resuscitated by Dempsey Development and Brokerage into 37 apartment units, most of which will be studios and one bedrooms starting at $1105 per month. Take a look at some of the pictures we captured of this project:

View from Shurs Lane shows the length of the building

The renters on the bottom floor, known as the Garden Level of the building, will have direct access to the neighboring parking lot through individual doors. The 81 spaces there and in a parking lot on the other side of the building will be reserved for residents of the complex.

Multiple projects are progressing

The 400 block of Moyer Street sits half a block away from East Girard, but since it dead-ends at E. Columbia Ave., it's fairly easy to miss. That being said, the quantity of construction on this little block is wildly disproportionate to its relatively low profile. We've actually visited this block on several occasions in the past, laying the groundwork for a number of projects. But when we passed by last week (hope everyone had a nice holiday by the way), we spied plenty of progress on multiple fronts.

Awesometown, first phase

The first phase of Awesometown has arrived at 425-39 Moyer St., which was for many years a vacant lot. This project was in the works for a long time, with the New Kensington Community Development Corporation ultimately teaming up with Postgreen Homes to get this fourteen unit development off the ground. The first phase includes eight homes, of which seven are sold. A second phase will mean four homes on Thompson Street and a pair of homes on an interior courtyard. When we last checked in on the project at the beginning of this year, foundations were just getting poured, so it's nice to see such progress as the year approaches its end.

Opens the day after Thanksgiving

Ice skating at Penn's Landing has been a tradition for twenty-two years. The Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest is a much newer custom that shows that sometimes you can teach an old dog new tricks. Now in its third season, the Winterfest takes the old RiverRink concept, injects it with radioactive steriods, and turns it into an Incredible Hulk of cold weather fun. But with less smashing and more fire pits.

We visited last night and came away impressed as ever with the efforts of the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation. Check out these pics!

It seems like this thing is finally gonna happen

The vacant lot on the 1900 block of Walnut Street, across from Rittenhouse Square, has embarrassing the neighborhood for over twenty years. Over the years, a variety of possible projects have come down the pike for this property, including a large parking lot and movie theater project from the PPA.

Current view on Walnut Street
Sansom Street view
Historic buildings on Sansom Street

Some of those plans have been close to becoming a reality, but we're pretty sure none have come as close as the current proposal from Southern Land Company. We told you about this project at the beginning of the year when the details of the project were still up in the air. Back then, we showed you an image of the massing of three buildings with a small building on Walnut Street and two huge buildings on Sansom Street. Now, thanks to Skyscraperpage, we see that a totally different plan is now in the works. The developers are cooking up a plan for a 51 floor, 600' building that would include a mix of rental apartments, condos, and retail. Solomon Cordwell Buenz did the design work.