If you’re anything like us, you’ve never been to the 900 block of N. 8th Street. And why would you ever find yourself on this block, which runs between Poplar and Girard Avenue, a few blocks west of the bulk of Northern Liberties development, and a few blocks east of West Poplar development? Be that as it may, this block has some pretty unique features, including a baseball field, a gym, a dance studio, a former church that’s been converted into apartments, and a former garage that’s also gone residential.
You might have noticed in the image above that there’s a zoning notice posted to a fence on the block. That zoning notice covers 962-80 N. 8th St., a space that’s been used as a parking lot for some time, as well as the warehouse to the north. Based on some of the other properties on the block, you might expect the garage to be reused, but you’d be incorrect. Instead, developers are looking to demo the garage and divide the property into three parcels. Plans call for a trio of 8-unit buildings, with each building having a pair of parking spaces. One odd aspect of the application is that one parking space per building will be van accessible. Could this be an indication that the units won’t be market rate? It’s worth noting, the affordable Friends Housing Cooperative is located just a couple blocks away and the Richard Allen PHA homes are a couple blocks to the west.
We should also point out though, there’s a 350-unit project that should soon be moving forward around the corner at 9th & Poplar. As we told you just last month, the courts reversed a ZBA decision that rejected the application from Post Brothers to renovate the former Quaker building into the most significant development in the area not associated with Temple University. With that project now cleared to proceed, new market rate development makes all kinds of sense on the 900 block of N. 8th Street. Soon enough, it’s certain that many more people will find their way onto this block. Surely, these projects are glad tidings for the gym’s membership numbers.