Naked Philly Blog Posts – OCF Realty http://www.ocfrealty.com Mon, 24 Sep 2018 21:41:23 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.11 http://www.ocfrealty.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/favicon2.png Naked Philly Blog Posts – OCF Realty http://www.ocfrealty.com 32 32 Valletta Seems Like An Appropriate Replacement for Tiramisu http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/queen-village/valletta-seems-like-appropriate-replacement-tiramisu http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/queen-village/valletta-seems-like-appropriate-replacement-tiramisu#respond Mon, 24 Sep 2018 21:41:23 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1159717 The post Valletta Seems Like An Appropriate Replacement for Tiramisu appeared first on OCF Realty.

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We’ve never been to Malta. Couldn’t even tell you where it is without the help of Google Maps, much less tell you the name of its capital city. But we live in the age of information and as such, we can find out all of those things with but a few keystrokes. And we can share that info with you! Malta is an island nation located in the Mediterranean Sea, roughly 50 miles south of Italy. It’s tiny, covering only 122 square miles, but is very densely populated, with a population of roughly 475K. English and Maltese are the official languages of Malta, but a large percentage of the population also speak Italian, thanks to the country’s proximity to Italy. Valletta is the capital city of Malta, and the entire city is considered a World Heritage Site.

By now you’re probably wondering why we’re giving you a 4th grade level, Wikipedia researched report on Malta, and maybe you’re curious about its major exports (limestone, electronics, tourism fwiw). You’re probably unclear on what Malta has to do with Philadelphia real estate, and that’s some appropriate confusion right there. So allow us to explain. At the end of last year, we told you that developers had 528-30 S. 5th St. under agreement, a building that had been vacant for a couple of years since a restaurant called Tiramisu closed its doors. Those developers had a plan to demolish the building on the property and replace it with a mixed-use building with 22 apartments and retail on the first floor. If you visit the property today, you’ll see that it has indeed been torn down.

In the past
Current view

The mixed-use building plan required a variance from the ZBA, but the case was never heard. Ultimately, the plans shifted for the property and now the developer, Noah Ostroff, is pursuing a by-right condo building with eight units. Already, foundation work is underway for this project, where units will start at prices above $400K. Check out these renderings, which show the front of the building and the rear frontage on Reese St., where residents will access a parking area.

Project rendering
Rear rendering

So what in the world does this have to do with Malta? On its face, not a whole heck of a lot. But what if we told you that the project is named Valletta, after Malta’s capital city? Ah, now it all makes sense! And not only did you learn about a new project coming to 5th Street, but you also learned a little bit about a small but spunky country in the Mediterranean which you’ll probably never visit (but probably should). As always, we’re happy to be of service.

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Gloria Casarez Residence Will Create 30 Affordable Rental Units http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/south-kensington/gloria-casarez-residence-will-create-30-affordable-rental-units http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/south-kensington/gloria-casarez-residence-will-create-30-affordable-rental-units#respond Mon, 24 Sep 2018 15:48:10 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1159697 The post Gloria Casarez Residence Will Create 30 Affordable Rental Units appeared first on OCF Realty.

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Almost two years ago, we drew your attention to a surface parking lot on the northeast corner of 8th & Thompson, having heard about a plan to redevelop the parcel with a total of 71 residential units. We weren’t sure about the nature of the new development- would it be a market rate project, representing another western push of South Kensington development? Or could we expect something affordable, given the presence of the 9th Street viaduct and the Girard Medical Center across the street? It wasn’t long before we learned that Project HOME was the developer, cementing the expectation of an affordable project.

We checked in on the property a year later, though construction had not yet started. Projects get delayed for all sorts of reasons, but this one was a doozy. North Philadelphia Health System, owner of the property in question and also the Girard Medical Center, had filed for bankruptcy, creating a potential scenario in which the property would be purchased by a party other than Project HOME. In the end, Ironstone Real Estate Partners bought the NPHS assets in the area with the exception of the parking lot, which went to Project HOME. This cleared the path for the affordable development to move forward. Checking in now, we see that the project has indeed proceeded, with a new apartment building mostly framed out.

Recent shot of the building
Another angle

This building represents the first phase of the project and includes 30 one-bedroom rental units. The apartments will be “targeted to young adults (age 18-23) who are homeless, have experienced homelessness, or are at risk of homelessness (including those aging out of foster care),” and the building will be LBGTQ-friendly. The people living in the building will have access to a variety of services, including housing, employment, education, and healthcare, and there will be a variety of activities relating to case management, life skills, and community-building. Applications for the units were due earlier this month and demand was clearly high, as the application period is already closed.

Project rendering

As you can see in the rendering, the building will be named the Gloria Casarez Residence. Gloria Casarez was the first director of the Mayor’s Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs after years of activism for the LGBTQ community. She sadly passed away in 2014, and her memory will live on with this building, which will provide crucial resources and services.

Girard Medical Center, across the street

This is only the first phase for this property, as we mentioned, with another forty units coming in a future project. Speaking of the future, we wonder what will come of the former NPHS properties across the street, owned by Iron Stone. For this year, we know that the City is leasing the buildings from Iron Stone for $2.2M, allowing NPHS to continue to operate. As for next year, we haven’t seen any news about that, but we imagine the status quo will be maintained as long as NPHS is able to keep things going. Has anyone heard about a longer term deal with Iron Stone, the City, and NPHS?

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An Architectural Potpourri on Master Street in Brewerytown http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/brewerytown/architectural-potpourri-master-street-brewerytown http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/brewerytown/architectural-potpourri-master-street-brewerytown#respond Fri, 21 Sep 2018 20:15:32 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1156521 The post An Architectural Potpourri on Master Street in Brewerytown appeared first on OCF Realty.

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Almost two years ago, we told you to expect some new construction on the 2900 block of W. Master St., just a few steps away from the Fairmount @ Brewerytown building. Back then, over a stretch of seven properties on either side of Myrtlewood Street, there were five vacant lots and only two structures. Given the pace of development in this part of town, it should come as no shock that things have changed dramatically in less than 24 months.

SE corner of Myrtlewood & Master, in the past
SW corner of Myrtlewood & Master, again in the past

East of Myrtlewood Street, the two empty lots at 2920 W. Master St. and 2924 W. Master St. have both been redeveloped into new homes. At first glance, it looks like the eastern home rises three stories with no eight-foot setback, so we assumed that Callahan Ward, the developers of this property, went to the ZBA to allow for this. But we looked at public record and saw no such application. Then we looked a little more closely and realized that the home has a very tall first floor, with double-height windows. That being the case, it does indeed have an eight foot setback on the third floor, and the gabled roof in the front is an architectural detail that hides the setback. We applaud the effort, as it stands in contrast to the newer home just two doors to the west with a typical third floor setback.

SE corner, current view

You can probably guess that Callahan Ward is also behind two homes on the other side of Myrtlewood, as they look exactly like the home we were just telling you about. 2932 W. Master St. is under agreement at a list price of $475K and 2930 W. Master St. is listed for sale for $449K. This tells us that the home that’s under agreement is probably going to sell for closer to the asking price of the home next door, once another buyer comes forward. As for the next home, at 2934 W. Master St., you can probably tell that it’s a rehab that got a third floor addition. Even though it probably has a little more square footage than the homes next door, it traded at $355K, a sizable discount compared to the new construction.

SW corner now

We’ve been pretty consistent over the years, lambasting the eight-foot setback requirement as a hamfisted effort to use architecture to forestall gentrification. In cases where developers are looking to build three story homes on skinny blocks, we’ve appreciated efforts to reduce the impact of additional height with the use of a mansard roof, but that doesn’t seem necessary on Master Street. In a perfect world, the developers would have gone to the ZBA and built to the front of the property line, but we can certainly appreciate the desire to avoid the risk and the stretched out development schedule. We’re not sure that this architectural choice would work on every block, but we’d argue that it gets the job done here. Meanwhile, from a purely architectural perspective, we’d probably vote for the rehab over any of the new homes.

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Grays Ferry Picks Up Some New Foundations and Homes http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/grays-ferry/grays-ferry-picks-new-foundations-homes http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/grays-ferry/grays-ferry-picks-new-foundations-homes#respond Fri, 21 Sep 2018 18:55:50 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1145618 The post Grays Ferry Picks Up Some New Foundations and Homes appeared first on OCF Realty.

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Walk down just about any block in Point Breeze north of Dickinson Street, and you’ll surely see some kind of construction activity, or at the very least, a building that’s gone up within the last couple years. As development in Point Breeze continues to hum along and competition for properties escalates, developers are looking more and more at Grays Ferry as an alternative. In Grays Ferry, land remains plentiful and much less expensive, though sale prices on new construction are commensurately lower than they are in the neighborhood on the other side of the 25th Street viaduct. And while we don’t expect prices in Grays Ferry to ever catch up with prices in Point Breeze, it stands to reason that they’ll continue to tick upward, as more developers build in the neighborhood.

That brings us to some new foundations that we spied the other day on the 2600 block of Federal Street. Developers purchased 2645 and 2647 Federal St. last year, paying a combined $160K for the lots. The eastern lot is zoned for multi-family use, but the western lot is zoned commercial. The eastern lot permits a duplex by right, and that’s what’s happening there. Looking to keep things simple (and because the western lot makes no sense as a commercial property), the developers went to the ZBA to get approval to build a duplex there as well. So look for a pair of duplexes in the near future, surrounded by a bunch of vacant lots. On the plus side, most of the vacant land to the east is owned by one entity, so it’s quite possible we’ll see additional construction next door in the relatively near future. Or maybe not for another ten years, who knows.

NE corner of 27th & Federal

The same probably can’t be said for the vacant lot at 1201-13 S. 27th St., directly across the street. This large-looking property is actually half a dozen small properties, most of which are owned by the same party that’s owned them since 2002. A notable exception is a random lot at 1207 S. 27th St. which has traded a couple times over the last several years and is currently listed for sale for $89K. We’d hope that a single developer would find a way to buy that lot and the others surrounding it in order to build a single project here, but that might be a pipe dream.

SE corner

On the northwest corner, meanwhile, an old blighted building that looked like an angry cartoon character has been torn down, and zoning notices are now in place where that building once stood. Back in April, the ZBA approved a pair of town homes here. And we already told you previously about the new home going up on the southwest corner.

NW corner

While we’re here, we might as well also mention a couple new homes going up around the corner, on the 2600 block of Manton. Developers bought 2642 and 2644 Manton St. back in 2013, paying a mere $30K for the pair. Now they’re building a couple of new homes, which will join some other new homes still under construction on the eastern end of the block.

New homes around the corner on Manton
New home on Manton that's under contract

The home pictured above is under agreement at a list price of $480K, and that’s not much lower than prices for new construction in Point Breeze. So perhaps Grays Ferry is catching up more quickly than we realized.

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Sprouts is Open at Broad & Washington http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/graduate-hospital/sprouts-open-broad-washington http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/graduate-hospital/sprouts-open-broad-washington#comments Thu, 20 Sep 2018 21:11:57 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1154170 The post Sprouts is Open at Broad & Washington appeared first on OCF Realty.

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For more years than we can remember, the huge parcel on the northwest corner of Broad & Washington has been sitting vacant, aside from a historic train shed which dated back to the 1870s and was most recently used as a food and produce warehouse. As you’re probably well aware, Alterra Property Group purchased this large property a couple years back and has been diligently working on Lincoln Square, a mixed-use project that includes over 300 apartments, more than 100K sqft of retail, and 400+ parking spaces. People have started moving into the apartments, and the retail tenants are beginning to open their doors. Perhaps the project’s most exciting business, Sprouts Farmers Market, opened yesterday, with most of the store occupying the aforementioned historic train shed.

Front of the store
Looking west, you see the old train shed

We zipped through Sprouts earlier today, wide eyed and bushy tailed at the chance to explore the first supermarket in the Graduate Hospital neighborhood. Not only were we interested in checking out a new place that’s not too far from the office, but we were also intrigued to see a store opening its first location in the region. Sprouts is based out of Arizona, and has over 300 locations around the country. There are only a handful of Sprouts stores on the east coast, with the closest located in Maryland. In contrast, there are over a hundred stores in California alone.

So what’s this Sprouts place all about? Check out these photos and see for yourself:

Walking in the front door
Check out area
Reasonably priced sandwiches made to order, or not
Bulk!
Meats and fishes
Great prices on produce
Large collection of vitamins and such
Some standard grocery items as well
This sign seems misplaced above the ice cream
Check out those ceilings

First of all, the conversion of the former train shed into a supermarket is a really cool design feature of the store. The gabled roof creates incredibly high ceilings, which makes the store feel very spacious and open. Plus, there’s a ton of natural light that’s brought in through sky lights and other windows, which isn’t terribly common in older grocery stores. The product selection is ok given the limited space in the store, with a large (and affordable) produce section, tons of bulk foods, and a decent mix of Sprouts brand grocery essentials.

Per a story from Philly Mag, Sprouts is huge on sampling and will let customers sample just about anything in the store. Since you’ve probably never tried a single Sprouts branded product, that’s a pretty great way to help you get comfortable. Another helpful tip is that weekly sales start on Wednesday mornings and end on Wednesday nights. In other words, twice as many items are on sale on Wednesdays, compared to other days. So shop at Sprouts on Wednesdays if you’re looking to save maximum dollars. Also, there’s a cafe area and a sandwich spot in the market, so you can grab some lunch or dinner before you do your shopping.

As we said, the store is on the smaller side, maybe even smaller than the Trader Joe’s on Market Street. And with Sprouts branded products filling the shelves, many familiar brands are missing in action. The good news, as we’ve shared in the past, is that a City Target location is also planned for Lincoln Square, and that should be opening in the near future. Once the Target opens, you’ll be able to get your produce and specialty groceries at Sprouts and your Skippy peanut butter and toilet paper at the Target. It won’t quite be one-stop shopping, but it’ll be pretty darn close. And thankfully, all of this comes at the expense of one of the most embarrassing vacant lots in Philadelphia. So about that northeast corner…

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New Windows Going in at Former South Philly Brush Factory http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/south-philly/new-windows-going-former-south-philly-brush-factory http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/south-philly/new-windows-going-former-south-philly-brush-factory#comments Tue, 18 Sep 2018 15:58:31 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1150539 The post New Windows Going in at Former South Philly Brush Factory appeared first on OCF Realty.

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Several readers have reached out to us over the years, wondering about the old brush factory, a group of rough looking industrial buildings at the corner of 12th & Jackson. While the sight of vacant industrial buildings is quite common in other parts of town (looking at you, Kensington), it’s definitely not the norm in this part of South Philadelphia. And with bustling Passyunk Avenue just a couple blocks to the north from here, the continued vacancy of the property feels all the more unexpected.

View from a year ago

If you’ve been following this blog for awhile, you might remember that we’ve covered this property a couple times in the past. We first brought it to your attention back in 2012, after a neighbor had noticed the building getting a little repair work but nothing more. Commenters helped fill in the blanks, noting that developer Tony Rufo owned the property and had some preliminary community meetings with an eye toward redevelopment. Two years later, we told you that a plan had come together for the property for adaptive reuse, with 164 apartments, 62 parking spaces, and a doorman. But as the image above clearly illustrates, that plan didn’t move forward for quite some time.

At the end of last year, the developers finally starting moving through the permitting process for this property. We don’t see any permits for interior construction at this time, but that’s surely in the works, based on all the money that’s being invested in the exteriors of the buildings. If you pass by today (or just look at these photos), you’ll see a gaggle of new windows have been installed, with others still on the way. Needless to say, the property looks a million percent better than it has looked… maybe ever.

Current view
Looking down 12th Street
Related building, on Iseminger Street
Auto garage on Jackson Street

We have to think that once the windows are installed, the developers will get to work on the insides of the buildings, maybe with a one-year timeline to make the property habitable. Given the long stretch of inactivity between zoning approval and initial construction, we suppose it’s also possible that things could sit idle for awhile, though that seems counterintuitive. But even if that’s what ultimately happens, we have to think that neighbors would prefer a vacant property with sparkly new windows over the longtime status quo. And sooner or later, the work will happen inside and a bunch of new folks will dramatically bring these buildings back to life. If we may request sooner, that would be great.

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After Years of Vacancy, Look For Three Little Homes at 18th & Carpenter http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/graduate-hospital/years-vacancy-look-three-little-homes-18th-carpenter http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/graduate-hospital/years-vacancy-look-three-little-homes-18th-carpenter#comments Mon, 17 Sep 2018 16:22:06 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1148726 The post After Years of Vacancy, Look For Three Little Homes at 18th & Carpenter appeared first on OCF Realty.

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Way back when, we believe there was a drinking establishment of some kind on the northwest corner of 18th & Carpenter. That was before our time though, because we can only remember a time when the one story building at 932 S. 18th St. was sitting blighted and vacant. But you have to agree, this certainly looks like a place that used to be a bar.

View back in 2011

In 2011, we brought this property to your attention and noted that it had been owned by the same individual since the mid-1980s. We mentioned that this person wasn’t such a conscientious owner, as they allowed the property to fall into a state of disrepair and also neglected their tax bills for over a decade. But we were optimistic that change was coming to this corner, partially because the property was listed for sale at the time for $200K, and also because the City had condemned the building and torn it down.

The very next year, Metro Impact put the property under agreement and came in front of the SOSNA community with a plan to build a triplex. That plan was ultimately withdrawn before the ZBA could rule though, and nothing happened here for quite some time as the property sat vacant. But finally, something is moving forward here; we passed by the property just the other day, and noticed a new hole in the ground.

Now there's a hole in the ground

Streamline Philly bought the property last spring and is now pursuing a triplex, and they’re looking to build entirely by right. Their project calls for three side-by-side homes which as far as we can tell will have roughly 320 sqft floor plates. This is a tripling down on a home design that was used last year at the corner of 21st & Webster, but when you consider that the Webster Street home sold for $500K, maybe they’re onto something. One of the units was listed briefly at that very price before construction got started, and that listing included a rendering of what we can expect to see here.

Project rendering

We get it, new construction is very much in demand in the Graduate Hospital neighborhood, and some developers are looking to find ways to get people into homes at the bottom of the neighborhood price range. Still, we don’t believe that this project will be the beginning of a mini-home trend in this neighborhood, as these homes are essentially a new take on a trinity, and less space really goes against current development trends in Philadelphia. Of course, if these homes sell quickly and at high prices, we reserve the right to change our tune and anoint this project as being brilliant and ahead of its time.

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Delorean Time Machine: Walnut Street Wendy’s http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/market-east/delorean-time-machine-walnut-street-wendys http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/market-east/delorean-time-machine-walnut-street-wendys#comments Sat, 15 Sep 2018 00:06:03 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1145624 The post Delorean Time Machine: Walnut Street Wendy’s appeared first on OCF Realty.

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Like a vestige from another time and place, a one-story Wendy’s sits on a skyscraper-zoned plot of land in Center City, on the northwest corner of 11th & Walnut. How in the world did this happen?

Believe it or not, the building was not built as a Wendy’s and it wasn’t built all that long ago. In 1967, developer Keefler & Kessler Associates acquired a 19th century commercial building that was in use as a 27-unit rooming house, with the intention to tear it down and build a Fidelity Bank branch. The new branch would be a modernist design by architect Emory Jackson out of Nashville, Tennessee. The one-story design seems extremely out-of-place today, but another 1-story retail building was already standing directly across the street at the time. That one was demolished in 1985 to make way for Jefferson Hospital‘s 1100 Walnut Building.

View in 1929

Demolition and Construction was complete by the end of 1968. The bank branch, known as the Fidelity Bank Jefferson Office, stayed alive in its one-story glass curtain-walled glory for ten years before shutting down. In 1978, the ownership of the property changed hands and the new owner, an entity called 1101 Walnut Corp, altered the building into a short-lived restaurant.

Fidelity Bank in 1974
Fidelity Bank in 1975

In 1980, Wendy’s came along and purchased the parcel. They had fast food chain architect Wolfgang Doerschlag (whose firm still exists today doing the same kind of work as WD Partners), design the alterations that turned it into a building more matching to the corporate brand. In 1985, the large brick planters that surrounded the building were removed and replaced with an expansion of the restaurant’s footprint with curved solarium windows, bringing the building into the form it still has thirty plus years later.

Wendy's in 1981
The view today

Despite all the changes to Center City and the surrounding neighborhoods since then, Wendy’s has stuck around on this incredibly prominent corner. Adding to the intrigue of its continued existence, it has the infamous distinction of being one of the worst-reviewed locations in the entire chain. A stabbing, a car crashing into the corner, and even illegal snow-shoveling have been associated with this location in just the past few years. And to make matters worse, when we snapped the photo above, the frosty machine was on the fritz.

In theory, a slim mid-rise as tall as the local height limit of 311 feet could be built on this property by-right, with no zoning variances. Given the small size of the parcel, just under 3,000 sqft, we’re not sure that such a project would even make sense, but we can say with a high degree of certainty that a one-story burger joint isn’t the highest and best use at this corner. Of course, if a developer did decide to take on a mid-rise building at this location, they’d also have to consider the Jefferson helipad, regularly generating wind and noise from directly across the street.

–Dennis Carlisle

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Little Apartment Building Popping Up Near Aramingo http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/fishtown/little-apartment-building-popping-near-aramingo http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/fishtown/little-apartment-building-popping-near-aramingo#respond Thu, 13 Sep 2018 21:04:00 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1143383 The post Little Apartment Building Popping Up Near Aramingo appeared first on OCF Realty.

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We found ourselves in the River Wards around lunchtime the other day, and as is occasionally our wont we stopped over at Fresh Works, a little sandwich shop on Belgrade Street. As we were trying to decide between a hoagie or a salad, we noticed a chain link fence around 2613 Miller St., the property next door. A beer distributor was located here for a long time, but the business has closed and its former home is now gone. Signage on the old warehouse next door still advertises the beer distributor, though.

In the past
Current view
Building next door

We took to public record to see what we could find out about this property, and quickly learned that new owners, Draft House Philadelphia LLC, bought the 9,000 sqft parcel a little over a year ago, paying $800K. At first glance, one might think that the buyers of this property have some connection to Interstate Drafthouse, the nearby pub on Palmer Street. Perhaps this might mean a second location, or a relocated bar?

It’s certainly possible that the developers of the Miller Street property are tied to the owners of the bar, after all the name of the street would seem like a dynamite fit for a drinking establishment. But the permits for the property give us a strong indication that a bar isn’t terribly likely here. According to those permits, we can expect a four story apartment building at this site, with 19 apartments, 16 parking spaces on the first floor, and a small commercial space with frontage on Belgrade Street. Kore Design Architecture has a rendering on their website, which you can also see below:

Project rendering

Given the sandwich shop and the warehouse (which has permits for an artist studio conversion) next door, you might think that this project is happening in a bit of an odd location. And the fact that the address sits just a few steps off Aramingo Avenue might further that perspective. But we’d counter that this location has a few things going for it. It’s incredibly walkable, with a supermarket (and an Arby’s) just a few steps away. Walk a few more blocks and you get to the Girard Avenue corridor in one direction, or Stock’s in the other. And there’s a park and a playground across the street. The project also calls for almost 1:1 parking, so anyone that has to drive to the ‘burbs for work will have easy highway access and a parking spot waiting for them when they get home.

Don’t get us wrong, we love a good beer distributor and we’re always sorry to see a business close. But as far as we can tell, this new building will represent a considerable upgrade over what was here before, and we wonder whether we’ll see other developers in this neck of the woods take a similar approach with other projects. Further, we wonder what kind of business will open in the little retail space on Belgrade Street; safe to assume it won’t be a sandwich shop.

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Checking in on the First Phase of the Hub at 31 Brewerytown http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/brewerytown/checking-first-phase-hub-31-brewerytown http://www.ocfrealty.com/naked-philly/brewerytown/checking-first-phase-hub-31-brewerytown#respond Wed, 12 Sep 2018 16:38:18 +0000 http://www.ocfrealty.com/?post_type=naked-philly&p=1140846 The post Checking in on the First Phase of the Hub at 31 Brewerytown appeared first on OCF Realty.

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Westrum Development Company was an early believer in the potential of the Brewerytown neighborhood, building out the Brewerytown Square development over an entire city block about a decade and a half ago. Though Westrum owned several other sizable properties in the area, they didn’t move forward with any other projects in this area for quite some time, surely due to the housing crash in 2008 and perhaps because there wasn’t enough demand for their initial offering. A few years back, Westrum started their comeback in the neighborhood with the Flats at 31 Brewerytown, a row of rental units on the 3000 and 3100 blocks of Thompson Street. They followed that up with the Point at 31 Brewerytown, a 50-unit building on 31st Street. Now, they’re working through the Hub at 31 Brewerytown, their biggest project in the area since Brewerytown Square.

Current view at 31st & Master
View from the north

This project calls for three buildings, with the first one located at the northwest corner of 31st & Master. When all is said and done, the project will entail 201 units, roughly the same number of parking spots, approximately 6,000 sqft of retail, and a swimming pool, ‘natch. You can see in the photos, building #1 is proceeding along nicely, which could mean that work will start soon on phase two, which will be located to the north. The western building will arrive somewhere down the line, as a third phase of the project. As has been their typical approach on projects in this neighborhood, Westrum has gone with modular construction for the building as the corner, and we have to think that will extend to the other buildings in the development.

Project rendering
Overhead view shows future phases and parking areas
Red Bell Brewery, to the north

If you combine all three of the 31 Brewerytown projects together, you get roughly 350 new units added to the neighborhood in just a handful of years. That would be a strong number if that were all the development in Brewerytown, but you’re well aware that there are plenty of other projects that have come online in the last few years, including the Pyramid Lofts, the Fairmount @ Brewerytown, and dozens of other one-off projects around the neighborhood. And of course, there are others still to come, like the Otto Brewerytown and MM Partners’ conversion of the former Red Bell Brewery, both just up the street.

To be sure, any questions Westerum might have had about Brewerytown ten years ago are put to bed at this point. Today, Brewerytown Square seems like a prescient move, and anyone that’s lived there since the beginning has seen unending changes on the surrounding blocks since they moved to the area. They should expect those changes to continue ’til the empty land runs out.

The post Checking in on the First Phase of the Hub at 31 Brewerytown appeared first on OCF Realty.

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