A couple of weeks ago, we heard some legitimate complaints from a reader living on the 1500 block of Brown St. about the condition of several of the properties on the 1500 block of Ridge Ave. which back up to her property. Not only are the properties an eyesore, but one of them apparently caught fire a little while back. Thankfully, the fire department was able to take care of things before the fire spread. We recently made our way over there and can certainly appreciate why someone wouldn't enjoy having some of these properties behind their home.
Some of the properties on this block have been renovated while others are long vacant and in terrible condition.
Thankfully, three of the blighted buildings on the block should soon see some dramatic change. 1526-30 Ridge Ave. went under contract recently at an asking price of $480K. According to the listing, the buildings have a combined squarefootage exceeding eleven-thousand. That being said, we'd be surprised if the developers decided to renovate the existing buildings rather than demolish them and building something new. If they want to go up four stories, they'll need to go to zoning, and as part of the negotiations with the community we'd hope they'll preserve at least some of the commercial space.
Ridge Avenue has great potential as a commercial corridor and projects rescuing long-vacant properties could go a long way toward helping it realize it. Of course, finding commercial tenants at this point is surely tricky, but as other burgeoning corridors have shown us, business brings business. And with all the new construction nearby in Francisville, the critical mass of potential customers is forming if it isn't here already. It should be quite interesting to see what the developers have in store. And as for the neighbor on Brown Street, we'd bet she'll be thrilled to trade a few months of construction noise for the opportunity to look at something other than blight from her backyard.