We were scanning the ZBA calendar today, as we so often do, and noticed a new project in the works on the 1300 block of N. Broad Street. This block is notable for a couple of reasons, mostly because it’s the home of the Legendary Blue Horizon, a 150 year old boxing gym that’s been closed for several years. That historic building was tabbed for redevelopment a few years ago, but has continued to sit vacant, unfortunately. On the plus side, it’s still standing for the moment. We could go on about the Blue Horizon, but instead we’d like to direct your attention to the junky building at 1310 N. Broad St., immediately next door to the south.
This property was most recently used as a banquet hall, and we couldn’t tell you how such an unimpressive building ended up next to the Blue Horizon and down the street from the amazing Freedom Theatre building. But here it has stood since 1950, according to public record. But it’s likely it won’t be around much longer. The current owners, the fabulously named Broad Street Bullies LLC, bought the property toward the end of last year, paying $1.15M for the 5,300 sqft parcel. Now they’re looking to build a five-story building with offices on the first floor and 21 units in the rest of the building. This will come with some layout challenges, as the property is only 27′ wide- but we’re sure they’ll figure out a way to make it work. The other challenge is the gas station next door, but there’s not a whole lot they can do about that.
While we’re up here, this seems like a good time to provide a quick update on a significant project taking place just a few doors away. You may recall, we told you in the fall of 2016 that developers had purchased 1324 N. Broad St. and were planning a 17-story building with 180 apartments and retail on the first floor. At the time, the project still needed to go to the ZBA and it wasn’t a sure thing that it would happen. The site work that’s taken place and the massive crane currently on the property give us a pretty good indication that it’s moving forward. It makes the 21-unit project down the block seem tame by comparison, but both are signs that Temple development is continuing to push down Broad Street. Makes you wonder if and when that development pressure will finally move the needle for the Blue Horizon property.