real estate

Some blight is gone, some remains

We visited the 1300 block of N. Carlisle St. a couple years ago and lamented the poor condition of the block. Back then, the block was overrun with empty lots and there were only two buildings with Carlisle Street addresses. One of those "buildings" was a shanty surrounding by 'No Trespassing' signs. The Redevelopment Authority had sold 1316-18 N. Carlisle St., home to the shanty, back in 1998, but never did anything to ensure that the owner redevelop the properties. Instead the block looked like this for years:

The view in the past

Earlier this week, we were in the area, and spotted some construction. Just to the south of the properties we were just describing, new footers were recently poured at 1310-12 N. Carlisle St., formerly a vacant lot (of course). Plans call for a three-story building with a real estate office on the first floor and three apartments above. We wouldn't be surprised to see the office, necessary because of the commercial zoning, converted into an apartment at some point in the future.

If you are connected to the Philadelphia real estate market, then the Actual Value Initiative (AVI) is a the latest buzz word flooding our real estate radar.  If you own a piece of real estate in Philadelphia that is taxable (that includes property investors, home owners, renters and Philadelphia-based businesses), expect a significant change in your taxes come 2014.

This week, Philadelphia Inquirer reporter, Ingra Saffron, highlighted Ori Feibush for his innovative social media and marketing strategies to promote his real estate ventures in Point Breeze.  In the article, Saffron revealed how area developers, like Feibush, are using savvy marketing, social media and big ideas (paired with even bigger investments) to secure sales. 

Ori C. Feibush takes a break in his OCF Cafe at 2001 Federal St., across from housing units he is building in the Point Breeze neighborhood. (CHARLES FOX / Staff Photographer)

Last Thursday, we celebrated the grand opening of our newest OCF Coffee House, a subsidary of OCF Realty.

Last fall, we reported the upscale sandwich shop/deli Carter’s Deli  at 2222 Brown St. in Fairmount was a go, despite some neighbors’ efforts to block the shop.

2222 Brown St

The deli has yet to materialize, and all we see are signs in the window for JBS Renovations Painting and Remodeling. What gives?

Sign in the window

Turns out about two months ago a realtor approached the owners and told them she could sell their place for $725K, in two months. The Sinni’s, who were approved for the deli last Fall by the ZBA, had just received a quote from a high-end restaurant designer for $88K. They planned to make some changes to the plans, like going to Manhattan to buy refrigerators from restaurants that opened and closed within two weeks, but when the realtor approached them they sat down and had a talk.

A couple of months back, we gave you the heads up about a halted construction project at 2030-32 E Dauphin St., in East Kensington. According to one of our commenters, it's a ten-unit building with ground floor parking. And it stretches all the way to Fletcher St.!

Dauphin St. shot
And the Fletcher St. side

Turns out, this partially constructed building, which sits on a lot that measures over 7,300 sqft, is going to sheriff's sale on Tuesday (As an aside, we encourage you to click on the link and check out the official Philadelphia Sheriff's website. Pretty impressive). According to the sheriff's sale schedule, owners Philadelphia Properties Redevelopment LLP owe nearly $1.2M on a mortgage for the property.

The Philadelphia Daily News recently wrote a feature story on Ori Feibush, founder of OCF Realty and real estate agent turned developer.  As reported by Daily News staff writer, Natalie Pompilio, "By now they know the name Ori Feibush in Point Breeze. Some praise it. Others curse it."  

Real-estate developer Ori Feibush has become a lightning rod in Point Breeze. (SARAH J. GLOVER / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER / PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS).

As a part of our meanderings through the neighborhood, we discovered 2370 E Norris St., a newer building that caught our eye with a not-so-common first floor deck space. The building went up in the last couple of years, replacing a vacant lot and a storefront with apartments above.

In the past

The new building has a larger commercial space on the first floor, and two apartments above. And a giant front deck.

The busy intersection of 10th and South Sts. currently houses a Superfresh, a Whole Foods, a florist, and a residential building with a couple of apartments. Change is coming to the residential building, on the southeast corner.

A current view

OCF Realty, currently located at 21st and South Sts., is opening a 2nd office in this space. While their current office is about 1500 sqft., the new office will be a much more snug 600 sqft. OCF also operates a cafe at 18th and South Sts., but this new office will be for real estate purposes only, housing a few agents who will focus on leasing and sales. The rendering below is from Susan Hopkins Interior Design.

In August 2011, Plan Philly compiled a special report with Ori Feibush on how tax delinquent properties thwart real estate development.