Six Home Proposal For Unusual Fishtown Lot

Some properties out there don't make too much sense in terms of their dimensions, but sometimes those are the parcels that present the most interesting development opportunities. Take, for example, 1208-12 E. Susquehanna Ave., a large property that's just steps from Girard Avenue.

Current view

This close to Girard Ave.

The property includes two homes on E. Susquehanna and a drive-aisle that leads to thirteen garage parking spots. In total, the lot contains about 7,700 sqft of space and was likely home to a warehouse at some point in its history which is the only way we can explain its unique dimensions. With about 50' of frontage, this parcel could accommodate a three-home project, but the homes would have obscenely large backyards since the property extends back 155'. Instead, developers are proposing a six-home development, giving two-car parking to each home. They came before the community at an FNA zoning meeting last month, but neighbors opposed the project by a 2:1 margin.

We reached out to Matt Karp, FNA zoning chair, to understand why the project faced opposition. He explained that residents thought that 1) the project would be too dense, 2) the proposed homes would be too tall, and 3) the pilot houses were too large. Without seeing the plans, it's hard for us to have serious insight, but it does seem odd that people would reject a project for density when it provides 2:1 parking. The developer is scheduled to come back to the community next month, so perhaps a they can deliver some sort of compromise.