Community meeting set for next week

Back in December, we told you that developer Jack Bienenfeld had the former Saint Mary of the Assumption church at 171 Conarroe St. in Manayunk under agreement and that he was pursuing an ambitious project for the site which would entail a combination of adaptive reuse and new construction. A reminder, the plans called for five new apartment buildings and a total of roughly 100 units and 138 parking spots. The project appeared on the Civic Design Review agenda last week but has since disappeared, postponed at least until April. Thankfully, the City didn't bother taking the CDR application offline, allowing us to learn some new details and grab some new images of the project.

Former ice house is gone

We've had a couple of readers reach out over the last month or two, wondering about the huge property at 59 Leverington Ave., where a building that had been home to a kennel and perhaps more famously Rambo's Ice House, was recently demolished. This property is in a curious location, with Septa Regional Rail lines located immediately to the south, and the beginning (or the end) of the Manayunk Bridge Trail to the north. Smushed between the current and former rail lines is about an acre of land, something you probably wouldn't have guessed given the small size of the building that previously stood here.

Goes to CDR next week

On Shurs Lane, near Mitchell Street, we told you earlier this week that the Ugly Moose closed its doors after a 15 year run and its building will soon be demolished and replaced with 21 townhomes. While we were in the area, we noticed some site work happening around the corner on Mitchell Street. Google Street View reveals there was a previously a one-story building at 4136 Mitchell St., but that structure is now gone.

View in the past

Current view

Developers bought this property about half a year ago, paying $2.4M for the privilege. At that price, you'd have to think that something significant would be coming here, and you'd be entirely correct. The developers are planning a five-story, 72 unit apartment building for this site with 10 parking spots and a small fresh food market on the first floor. The project is by-right, but since it will mean the creation of over 50 new units, it has to go through the CDR process. It's on the agenda for January 10th.

They had a good run

Ugly Moose closed its doors just before the calendar flipped, ending a 15 year run at 443 Shurs Ln. in Roxborough. This closing did not come as a surprise, with buzz about it since the fall and the bar actively counting down the days until the end. Still, for those that patronized the place for a number of years, now is a sad time. And for people who never set foot inside, today is just another day.

Entrance to the Ugly Moose

The bar was down this driveway

In September, representatives from HOW Properties attended a meeting with the Central Roxborough Civic Association and presented a plan to demolish everything on the site and construct a four-story commercial building with a 57-car parking lot. Possible tenants included a daycare center, a gym, and a restaurant. Somewhere along the line though, the deal apparently fell through.

To be determined how this will play out

Saint Mary of the Assumption, a Catholic Church located on a large campus at 171 Conarroe St. in Manayunk, closed its doors a little over a year ago. This came just a few years after the archdiocese merged Saint Mary's with the St. John the Baptist parish in response to dwindling membership and attendance. For people who grew up at this church, this was surely a tough pill to swallow. But this has been a common theme across the city, with numerous churches closing in recent years and the announcement of additional closings coming in today's paper. While the closing of Saint Mary's was tough for many former parishioners, it represented an opportunity for developer Jack Bienenfeld, who now has the massive property under agreement.