We’ve written quite a bit about the fact that development in Northern Liberties is spreading to other neighborhoods as vacant land in No Libs becomes scarcer and more expensive. Fishtown, South Kensington, and Poplar are all seeing new development on blocks that developers wouldn’t have given any thought to just a few years ago. Just consider all the development in process and on the way next to I-95 as an example of efforts to keep the magic going at less perfect locations than, say, next to Liberty Lands Park.

Today, we have an example of infill construction on a South Kensington block that has remained more or less intact over the years, in contrast to some other blocks in the neighborhood. We stopped by Paesano’s for a delicious lunch last week, and noticed a newly framed house on Palethorp Street. Walking up the street to get a closer look, we discovered a second home halfway up the block. Looking at Google Maps, we saw that 1216 N Palethorp St. was formerly an overgrown lot and 1238 N. Palethorp St. was a vacant building.

The vacant lot

Further up the street

According to public record, both properties were purchased in the last couple of years at sheriff’s sale. Now, the new owners are building single family homes. The southern property is owned by Haviv David, a developer who has done several projects we’ve covered over the years. The northern property is owned by Northeast Renovations LLC. The architect for both homes is Joe Serratore, though we don’t believe the projects are related.

The southern home

You can see the bay of the northern home

The home to the south will surely sell at a premium price due to its size and close proximity to Northern Liberties (you can see the Superfresh from the front door). The home to the north may be a little trickier for a buyer to embrace.

Closer look

It’s a little hard to tell from the perspective of the photo, but this home is being built on a lot that’s only 12′ wide. For the uninitiated, the standard Philly row home sitting on a 16′ wide lot, and the extra four feet makes a world of difference. We’d be interested to take a tour of this home once it’s finished to see what steps the architect took to compensate for the narrowness of the home. Even with a creative approach, the place will still feel tight, in our estimation.

Nevertheless, it’s getting built and the fact that a developer is moving on such a challenging property only reinforces our point that development is spreading out from Northern Liberties at a tremendous rate. Where does it stop? Stay tuned.