Just south of the South Bank campus is the Forgotten Bottom neighborhood, which we've mentioned a handful of times in the past. It's tucked between Grays Ferry Ave., I-76, and the Schuylkill River, and it's pretty easy to miss. Along with a few hundred homes, the neighborhood has a newer baseball field, a large FedEx building, and the entrance to the underutilized Dupont Crescent section of the Schuylkill River Trail. This neighborhood, which has seen little change in recent years, will soon be experiencing an unprecedented amount of development.
Though we told you about the project about half a year ago, we don't think construction has been going on for much more than a couple of months. Clearly, the developers are looking to put Pathmark out of business as quickly as possible.
It's a shame, really. Hopefully, both markets will be able to coexist successfully. We just aren't sure how.
Perhaps in your travels around town, you've stumbled upon a handsome but weary looking building on the northwest corner of 26th & Wharton. Wharton Hall, as the building was originally called when it was constructed in the late 1800s, has an interesting history and a potentially exciting future.
Wharton Hall in 1959
According to Hidden City, the building was originally used as a meeting hall and an occasional boxing venue, and was converted into a Catholic School in the 1920s. The school moved down the street in the late 1950s, and a photo shop took over the building for the next several decades. It's sat vacant, to our knowledge, for over a decade, and while its facade has deteriorated, the bones still look pretty good. A reader tipped us off recently, though, that the beat-up building is finally getting the love it's been craving for years.
We admit it- we're fans of the Grays Ferry Pathmark. It's large for a city supermarket, has a decent selection of products, offers some pretty good sales, is relatively clean, and the people who work there are generally friendly and pleasant.
Feels like home
For residents of Graduate Hospital, Point Breeze, and Grays Ferry, it's the most convenient option for shopping for large quantities of food, though without a car (or car share), it's considerably tougher to appreciate. Then again, with the high prices and poor selection at South Square Market and the never-ending lines at Trader Joe's, signing up for Zipcar to go to the Pathmark a couple times a month seems like a no-brainer.
Considering our fondness for the Pathmark, it's with a good bit of shock that we tell you that there's some surprising competition on the horizon. An eagle-eyed reader told us about a little sign they noticed earlier this week at the corner of 31st & Grays Ferry, on the site of a large vacant lot.