In November of 2012, the opening of the Bottom Dollar Foods near 31st & Girard was chock full of excitement, pomp, circumstance, optimism, and plenty of other good feelings, even though the look of the project was about a hundred steps short of the original conceptual drawings. So yeah, the building looks awful like the suburbs, but we were still very pleased to see the supermarket open its doors, eliminating a persistent food desert in Philadelphia. And aesthetics aside, we were really sorry to see the market close its doors at the end of last year when Aldi bought out the Bottom Dollar chain.

But unlike the situation on Grays Ferry Avenue, where the former Bottom Dollar building is now seeking a tenant, Brewerytown is getting a new supermarket in place of the old one. Aldi is currently doing a major renovation of the three-year-old building and will be opening there in the coming months. This is good news. Not quite as exciting but still relevant, the renovation effort includes work on the facade. You can see, they've stripped off the stucco where the Bottom Dollar sign once lived. Seems like a great opportunity to do something cool, right? We'd wager they won't, but we can certainly dream.

Future Aldi

Across the street from the future Aldi's parking lot, at 1213 N. 31st St., three homes have appeared on a formerly vacant lot. Remember, we told you about this project last summer, before Steph-Sin Developers even presented to the ZBA. As you can tell, they got their approvals and three new homes have appeared. The same guys built some homes a block to the north a couple years back and have been renting them out, and we wouldn't be shocked to see the same plan here.

3 homes under construction

3 rentals from the same developers just up the street

If we had to guess, the homes will be ready to go before the market renovation is finished, but the new residents will soon come to appreciate the convenience of a sparkly new grocery store across the street. And if the grand opening doesn't involve a giant orange pig reminiscent of "Algie," so much the better.

A common sight at Bottom Dollar openings

Then again, if they're big Pink Floyd fans, maybe they'll be disappointed.