We first brought a blighted building at 1221 S. Broad St., a former armory, to your attention back in the summer of 2011, when plans to build a four-story mixed-use building threatened to cover a mural of what looked like a zombified Frank Sinatra. The old armory was constructed in the 1880s, and sat mostly vacant in recent years, slowly deteriorating inside.
Some twisted title problems meant that a bill in the State Senate was required to actually get the property sold, a process that moved forward in 2013. At that time, a proposal came forward from developer and hardward store guru Michael Carosella to demolish the building and replace it with a six-story building with fifty apartments and fifty-three parking spots. The neighborhood came out in support of the project, and though we appreciated the design work from Landmark Achitectural Design, we wished for a retail component. Considering the growth of commerce on this part of South Broad Street, with the appearance of Boot and Saddle, the reopening of the Broad Street Diner, and redevelopment plans finally (hopefully, maybe) moving forward at Broad & Washington, we'd say it wouldn't have been such a bad idea. But alas.
In the fall of 2013, the old armory building started coming down. At some point last year, construction started on the new building. We passed by the other day, and spied a building that's framed out in steel.
By this time next year, we suspect the building will be finished and at least partially occupied. It should be interesting to revisit at that point, and see just how close the rendering came to approximating reality. And we'll have a better understanding of how the new building relates to the building that's now lost forever.