An old warehouse may be razed to make room for the construction of a 24 single-family home project at 5th and Poplar Streets. The developer and neighbors have been unable to reach an agreement about the project after return appearances before the Northern Liberties Neighborhood Association (NLNA) zoning committee. Still, developers plan to take the project to the ZBA, according Larry Freedman, NLNA zoning chair.

“After a long debate with neighbors we actually said we’re sticking to our original position, which is see what you can do with the original building,” said Freedman. The building was previously owned by Pearl Pressman Liberty Printers.

The warehouse plus ghost sign

At a meeting last month, committee members were unmoved by a plan to demolish the warehouse, which occupies about 30K sqft, combined with the adjacent parking lot, and was acquired by Semark Associates for just over $1M last March, according to public record. This month they felt the same way.

The warehouse stretches from the northwest corner of 5th and Poplar to Randolph Street and is two blocks away from good eats like North Third and another block or so from The Abbaye. It’s also just a block away from a series of very high-end new construction homes at 6th & Poplar, built over the last year (and with phase two still on the way).

A block away, over the summer. There are now foundations next to those homes

The warehouse itself is nothing of an architectural marvel. But it is big and could potentially be readopted into loft living. It doesn’t seem to make sense to go before the ZBA when the ZBA knows neighbors aren’t behind your project, but there’s really no predicting how the ZBA will rule. We’ll see what happens, and will update you when we hear some news.

–Lou Mancinelli