Yikes, Inc. was founded in 1996 and had been operating out of rented office space in Northern Liberties since 2001. Over the past few years, owners Mia and Tracy Levesque had been thinking about buying office space in the area, and last year, they found the perfect space. 204-206 E. Girard Ave. was a wreck, but in that disaster of a building, Mia and Tracy saw the potential to fulfill their triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit. Despite web development being their only development experience, they embarked down the real estate development path, and things seem to have turned out pretty well to this point.
With partners Plumbob, Greensaw, and Sustainable Solutions Corporation, Yikes was able to take two buildings that were uninhabitable to the point that “not even a mouse could live there” and create two retail spaces and four apartments with an eye toward sustainability. According to Mia, 90% of the materials used were salvaged or reclaimed, and there was never even a thought given to tearing down the buildings and starting from scratch. Mia was also quick to credit the companies that partnered with Yikes, saying she was “really lucky we were able to pull in other Philly businesses that are part of the same sustainability movements,” and she was really glad that the project was “in the hands of experienced people who could see our vision.”
For the full story from the Yikes perspective, you can check out their blog, which details the project from start to finish.
Tomorrow night, Yikes and Mayor Nutter will be holding an open house to celebrate the completion of their new LEED Platinum buildings. Running from 5pm until 8pm, the event will highlight the design and architectural details of the new office space, the still available commercial space next door, and the four apartments. Food and drink will be provided by numerous bars and restaurants. You can RSVP to the event and get more info here.
Ohbytheway, the apartments are all rented, but the commercial space, measuring 750 sqft + 550 sqft in the basement, is available for $2,050/mo. Just in case you’re looking for a storefront in Fishtown, in one of the greenest buildings in town.