It’s been a bumpy road for 613 S. 24th St. over the last several years, but now it finally appears as though something will be happening here. It was over seven years ago (yikes) that we first drew your gaze to this little property, noting that the two story building at the site was not really the highest and best use for the property and looking forward to a proposed mixed-use project. That proposal called for a day care on the first floor and 18 apartments sitting atop some underground parking in a project called Bloc24. It would have been a really nice project that would have dovetailed with the Bloc23 project next door, but it got denied at the ZBA.
More recently, in 2018, the developers tried for another bite at the apple and proposed 10 units here over four stories in a project that also called for a couple of units at workforce prices. But the ZBA denied that plan as well, due to a refusal for lot coverage. Looking to avoid a third strike, the developers are now pursuing a by-right development here, and are planning a new mixed-use building with a fresh food market on the first floor and eight market-rate units upstairs. The project will take advantage of the fresh grocery zoning bonus, which allows for a five-story building by right but requires a market on the first floor. If you think it’s goofy that there will be a grocery store located immediately next door to an Heirloom Market and a block from South Square Market you’re not alone, but the language of the bonus didn’t forbid this practice at the time, and as a result, the developers will be able to (finally) move forward with this project.
With a zoning permit in hand, the developers have demoed the old building on the site in preparation for construction. As you might expect, the new plan comes with a new design from Moto Designshop, as compared to the plan from seven years ago. The architecture looks like it’ll be some of the nicest in the neighborhood and we expect the interior finishes to take a similar high end approach, given that this will be a condo project.
It’s been frustrating to see two apartment buildings appear in this immediate vicinity over the last few years while this property has remained undeveloped, and it’s a relief to learn that it’s going to start moving forward in the near future. The design will hopefully up the ante for other projects nearby, and will certainly be an upgrade over the building that we here previously. And while the market on the first floor is certainly going to be redundant, we don’t imagine the neighborhood will complain about more options for grocery shopping.
Disclosure: OCF Realty, the parent company of Naked Philly, will be the listing broker for these units.