Large Student Housing Building Appears at 46th & Walnut

We would have to imagine that at some point in its history, the northeast corner of 46th & Walnut was home to a row of Victorian homes, or perhaps a larger castle-like structure like the property on the southeast corner of this intersection.

Southeast corner of 46th & Walnut

More recently, at least for the last few decades, there's been a one-story building in the middle of this lot which looks like it was built as a 7-11. The final tenant of the building was the Halal Center Food Market, but that store closed a few years ago. And last year we told you that the building would be demolished and University Realty was planning a 40-unit student housing building in its place.

In the past

During the winter, when we were in the area checking in on other projects, we noticed that the new building had been framed out. Passing by the other day, we found that the exterior of the building is mostly finished. According to the University Realty website, the building has 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom units and will include amenities like a study room, a fitness center, free wifi, free laundry, and free personal trainer service (!). We've said it before and we'll say it again, college kids today don't know how well they've got it. Also, thoughts on the architecture?

The new apartment building

This building is arriving on the scene just half a block south of a bunch of new triplexes at or near Sansom Street, where we'll eventually see 57 new units on parcels that had been sitting vacant for a long time. Combined with the 40 units coming soon to 46th & Walnut, that's nearly 100 units in a very small area that's six blocks away from the edge of Penn's campus. We find ourselves wondering whether this development is spurred, at least in part, by the planned relocation of the Police HQ to 46th & Market. Should this plan fall through as Philly Mag reports today, it's fair to think about whether these apartments will suddenly become less attractive and whether developers might pump the brakes on future projects nearby.