Explaining Some Steel Near Grays Ferry Avenue

1100 and 1102 S. 27th St. sit just a few steps away from Grays Ferry Avenue. These properties have been sitting vacant for at least twenty-five years, which is consistent with many other properties in this part of town. Also consistent with other properties around here, they're now being redeveloped. But this redevelopment isn't proceeding as one might expect. View of the property As we've commented previously, the vast majority of the development we see [...]
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Townhome Project Finally Finishing on the 1300 Block of Bainbridge

It's been a long road for the townhome development on the 1300 block of Bainbridge, which we first brought to your attention way back in 2012. At that time, the sizable lot at 1319-51 Bainbridge St. was operating as a surface parking lot, which seemed like a bit of an underuse at such a prominent location. Developers bought the property for $5M, and at the time this was a rather hefty price, but in retrospect it [...]
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Blight Demolished at 27th & Oxford – What’s Coming Next?

Someday, when we've got some serious time on our hands, we'll do some research and try to learn about how and why lot lines were drawn when city blocks were established back in the 19th century. Was it good city planning back then to make lots as large as possible? To keep big lots with big lots and small lots with small lots? To mix things up? Today, an appropriate lot size for a home is considered to [...]
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Surface Lot Turning to Apartments on Corinthian, Near Girard College

The five-story building at 909 Corinthian Ave. dates back to 1911, and was originally constructed as housing for nurses. Those nurses worked across the street, at Lankenau Hospital, at least until the hospital moved to the Main Line in 1953. Unrelated to the building, it's remarkable to consider that two hospitals once operated in this immediate area, with Lankenau (and later Landis State Hospital) and Saint Joseph's at 16th & Girard, and now both are now gone. [...]
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Three Homes Under Construction on Lincoln Drive, Next to Historic Mansion

A reader reached out the other day and drew our attention to three homes currently under construction on Lincoln Drive, in Mount Airy. Granted, this is a little out of our typical geographic scope- but hey, the ZBA has been closed for a month and a half and hardly any construction has occurred around town during that time- so we'll take what we can get at this point. And besides, visiting Lincoln Drive with the expectation [...]
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Demo Next to El Bar, Cool Building Upcoming

We visited Good Spoon Soupery the other day for some curbside pickup and noticed some relatively recent demolition activity just a few doors down. Since this is what we do, we figured we'd investigate what happened at 1350 N. Front St., where a rather unexciting single family home once stood. In the past Current view From the corner Looking at public record, we see that developers bought this property about two years ago, paying a staggering [...]
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What’s Happening at 2222 Frankford Avenue?

A reader reached out to us, wondering what's happening at 2222 Frankford Ave., where a building was demolished toward the end of last year. Looking into things, we took a trip down memory lane using Google Maps Street View, and took a look at this property way back in 2007. Holy cow, did this block look awful! The surrounding properties were a mix of vacant land and blighted buildings- 2222 Frankford Ave. might have been the [...]
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Changes on the 2500 Block of W. Oxford, Sooner Than We Expected

We first visited the 2500 block of W. Oxford Street back in 2017, and for a host of reasons, this feels like it was instead thirty years ago. Back then, this block felt like it was very far away from the development boom to the south in Brewerytown, due to the prevalence of blight and vacancy and the lack of any construction on the block. Nevertheless, we has a feeling that that development would continue [...]
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Change Afoot For Former Home for Aged Couples

The building at 1723 Francis St. sits in the middle of Francisville, at the intersection of Francis and Perkiomen Streets, where Francis Street curiously and dangerously switches directions from one-way moving northeast to one-way moving southwest. Why this continues to be the case and how there are not numerous head-on collisions here, we may never know. But we digress. This building, which has some terrific bones, was once known as the Tilden Home For Aged Couples, [...]
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Apartment Building Could Replace Roofing Company on 26th Street

The Fairmount neighborhood is one of the most established in greater Center City, with a well maintained housing stock which sell for high prices, a quality neighborhood public school, and a strong commercial corridor on Fairmount Avenue (half of which is technically in Spring Garden and some of which is in Francisville, but nevertheless). Brewerytown, sitting just north of Fairmount, suffered from a tremendous amount of disinvestment over the decades, but in the last several years [...]
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