Update: Changes for Ugly Arch Street Garage

Have you ever driven into town on the Ben Franklin Bridge and decided to take the 8th Street exit? If you've taken this route, you've probably noticed the horrendous parking garage that covers 8th Street between Arch and Filbert Streets.

In the past

It was over two years ago that we first told you that the PPA was starting renovations in the tunnel under the garage. And it was almost exactly two years ago that the PPA moved their offices there from West Philly– that was when we shared renderings for a renovation to the facade of the parking structure. But ever since then, we've not really given it much thought. Until yesterday, when we went to the PPA office to renew a parking permit. We discovered that change is afoot!

View from 8th Street doesn't really tell the story

Well this is something different

The garage renovation is far from finished. When all is said and done, it will (theoretically) look something like this:

Project rendering

The futuristic makeover will be a nice change for this property, which has looked like a relic of the 1970s since, uh, the 1960s.

Oh, we should also mention that there's a new nine-story building that has appeared next door.

Project next door has come a long way

We last checked in on the project at 810 Arch St. in October, shortly after groundbreaking took place. That's some impressive progress in a short period of time, no? If you don't recall, this project is a collaboration between Project H.O.M.E. and the Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation and includes 94 affordable apartments. About half of the units are for Project H.O.M.E. clients and the other half will be reserved for elderly Chinatown residents. As is the case with the garage next door, there's still plenty of work to be done but the progress is encouraging.

And when the residents move into the building, probably early next year, their next door neighbor will have gotten a much-needed facelift.