About ten months ago, two zoning notices appeared at 1237-39 N 31st St., announcing plans for two single family homes. These homes were to be built by Steph-Sin Development, the folks that constructed the home immediately next door last year.
Over the past ten months, much has happened in this area. Notably, a new supermarket was built across the street and a nearby building was renovated with plans to open a (nearly ready, we’d guess) cafe. Yet for most of those months, 1237-39 N 31st St. remained vacant, with groundbreaking only taking place last month. At present, foundations are clear evidence that the project is moving forward.
Why the delay, you may ask? We don’t know for sure, and suspect we’ll never find out. Steph-Sin purchased these two lots from the Redevelopment Authority, home of red tape, inexplicable delays, and tremendous frustration for parties attempting to purchase land from the City. The developer only settled on the lots in February, despite going to zoning for them a year prior. Sure, it’s posible that the delay was due to the developer and not the City, but we’re gonna stick with our theory.
It’s certainly encouraging to see these lots become homes. Regrettably, a much larger vacant lot to the north doesn’t appear any closer to development. Owned by Westrum for about a decade, this 47K sqft lot may continue to look exactly the same for years to come while the neighborhood improves around it. And with an insulting assessment of $94,900 from a totally incompetent assessor at OPA, what incentive does Westrum have to develop?
The mind reels.