South Kensington

Why not see how a first phase works out?

A few months ago, we told you about a five-home project in the works at 6th & Jefferson which is now under construction. Around the corner, at the corner of Randolph & Oxford, demolition has wrapped up and a six home project is on the way. In between these projects, at 1500 N. Randolph St., sits a rather large property that's been sitting vacant for many years. According to historic maps, the Consolidated Cigar Company had a factory here at one point, but it disappeared at some point between the 1960s and 2007.

In the past. Also, this shows how far back the lot goes

With all of the construction happening nearby, it seems like it was only a matter of time before this property caught the redevelopment bug. We passed by the other day and discovered some heave machinery and a hole in the ground, so it seems the day has come. The 30K+ sqft property was listed for sale back in 2014, selling in a few months for $850K. At the end of last year, developers presented a plan to the ZBA to subdivide the property into seven parcels and build six homes.

One more exciting than the other

When we told you last week about twelve new units coming to the 300 block of Cecil B. Moore Ave., we didn't think we'd be back in this neck of the woods quite so quickly. But as is often the case, the story inspired a reader to reach out to us with news of other development happening nearby, and when we initially snapped photos we didn't do the greatest job exploring the surrounding blocks. Our bad. So here we are again on Cecil B. Moore Avenue, this time looking at two zoning notices at the intersection with North American Street.

Zoning notice on the southeast corner
Zoning notice on the northeast corner

The zoning notice on the south side is a very straightforward project. Developers purchased 224 Cecil B. Moore Ave. at the end of last year and are looking to build a single-family home on this lot, which is one off from the corner. The project has to go to the ZBA because the parcel is zoned for industrial use. This makes sense, as it's almost on N. American Street, but on the other hand it's not even 1,000 sqft in size, and we're not sure what kind of industrial user would be able to do anything with such a small parcel. 

One property is already under construction

We spied a new hole in the ground in South Kensington, and another one could soon follow. We've visited the intersection of 6th & Thompson several times over the last few years, noting a few different projects to the north on 6th Street and a rather cool looking building on the northeast corner. In addition, we've brought the large vacant lots on the northwest and southwest corners to your attention, speculating that they'd eventually get redeveloped.

Cool building on the northeast corner, some newer buildings to the north

That new hole is located on the southwest corner. Developers bought these lots about a year and a half ago, and according to the permits it looks like they're building three new duplexes. This is in a similar vein to the other projects we've seen nearby, as many of these parcels are zoned for multi-family use.

We told you to buy it!

As South Kensington has seen incredible redevelopment activity over the last few years, the 1400 block of Germantown Avenue in particular has undergone an incredible transformation. Developers have systematically bought up vacant lots and blighted buildings on the west side of the block, building over a dozen new homes and duplexes. But that's not all for this block, with plans moving forward for the renovation of a former store fixture factory at 1401 Germantown Ave. into 50 apartments and ground-floor commercial.

Construction on the west side of the street, back in March
This building is getting redeveloped

The last time we visited this block, back in March, we told you that the large property at 1413-27 Germantown Ave. was listed for sale for $3.9M and encouraged someone to step up and buy the property. Given the development on the block and in the surrounding neighborhood, the nearly 30K sqft parcel represented an amazing opportunity, though the price was a little bit high for our liking.

A total of eighteen units are coming here?

A row of properties near the intersection of 3rd Street & Cecil B. Moore Avenue has been sitting vacant for a long time, surely for many years before Google started recording images in its Streetview function in 2007. This should come as no surprise, as this neighborhood was in bad shape for quite awhile, though it's been undergoing a major transformation in the last half decade or so. Much of the new development in the area has been concentrated on the southern and eastern sections of South Kensington, but we've seen added interest of late in the north, like this project on Berks Street, and in the west, like this project at 6th & Jefferson. So of course, now there's some construction activity on the 300 block of Cecil B. Moore Avenue, which a reader was kind enough to bring to our attention the other day.

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