Francisville

One is under construction, the other recently approved

While perusing the ZBA calendar the other day, we noticed that 717 N. 17th St. had received a variance. Looking at some older maps, we can see that this property has been empty for quite some time, since at least 2007. A few years back PHA built an unfortunate structure immediately to the north, one of a string of architectural crimes they've perpetrated on Philadelphia. But soon a triplex will rise at this corner, and two of the units will have a parking space.

Vacant lot at 17th & Olive

You can see in the image above, there's another project ongoing right around the corner which we didn't even know about! The building appears to front Swain Street but the address is actually on Chadwick Street. 714-24 Chadwick St. has also been vacant for quite some time. Looking at old photos, it was pretty gross, a sign of excellent stewardship from longtime owners PHDC. But new owners purchased the large lot in 2014 and now they're building a seven-unit building. The photo is a few days old, so we'd imagine the building is at least another story higher by now.

Looks like it could happen soon

As the years have rolled by, we've covered plenty of projects on Ogden Street in Francisville. Most recently, we checked in on several projects on the 1500 block. The 1600 block was previously a wasteland of vacant lots, but it has seen a bundle of new buildings appear in the last few years. Despite the good stuff happening nearby, the 1400 block of Ogden Street, which sits adjacent to the blighted but getting fixed-up-soon Metropolitan Opera House, has remained untouched.

North side of Ogden Street, looking west
North side of Ogden Street, looking east
South side of Ogden Street, view from 15th Street

Raise your hand if you wanna move here tomorrow!

The street nobody's heard of

Okay, raise your hand if you've heard of Erdman Street.

Nobody?

Thought so. Even if we told you it was in Francisville, you would still probably be flummoxed. So let's end the suspense, shall we?

Erdman Street!

Erdman Street is a barely an alley, only accessible from the 800 block of Perkiomen Street. This is the only block of Erdman Street in the entire city, from what we can tell. And oh by the way, it looks totally horrible.

Cool sign and tree will disappear

Over the years, we've been passing along news about various changes at or near the intersection of 19th & Poplar. It's almost impossible to keep track of all the new buildings that have sprung up, but a couple of lots have remained on the southeast corner. In recent years, those lots have contained an artistic 'Francisville' sign and a Zagar-ified tree. Now, a couple of zoning notices have also appeared on the site.

Recent shot

Developers have owned the parcel since 2010, but new owners stepped in last summer. Soon, they'll appear before the ZBA with plans for two duplexes, joining the relatively new duplexes immediately right next door. It will be a shame to see this little artsy nook disappear, but if we're to be honest with ourselves it was only a matter of time before this was going to happen.

Looking up 19th Street, progress on another project

We last visited this intersection in March when we discovered four foundations on 19th Street, half a block to the north. Today, four triplexes have risen from the ground and brickwork is underway. This parcel, in contrast to the corner with the sign and tree, was a mess for many years. So nothing sad about this parcel turning over.

Homes plus condos coming soon

A couple of readers have been wondering what's up with the recently created hole at the intersection of Corinthian & Ogden, on the southeast corner. We actually didn't even know about it until we coincidentally passed by the other day, on our way to snap photos of the nearly completed apartments where Corinthian hits Girard. In a past life, this corner was a fenced-in property that looks like it may have been a parking lot of some kind. Perhaps there were homes here once upon a time, but whatever was here previously was gone well before we came on the scene.

Pages