Don’t you love a changing view? They can be found all across the city, as buildings of all different heights, shapes, and styles change the skyline and the streetscape. One spot that will look much different in all directions soon enough is the intersection of N. Broad St. & Girard Ave., one of the busiest in North Philadelphia. Perhaps best known for a now-demolished McDonald’s, a one-story CVS and a three-story building recently stood on the SW corner, with the CVS looking especially out of place at this transit hotbed. Those buildings are also gone, with two projects rising in their stead.

Let’s start with the north end of the site, 922-38 N. Broad St., where a new building is now emerging from the ground. This project will feature 196 units, along with parking for 40 cars and 64 bicycles. The ground floor commercial space calls nearly 30K sqft, and we are happy to report that the signage surrounding the property states that a Lidl grocery store will be anchoring the corner. Hightop Development brings us this seven-story design from CosicaMoos Architecture, which will change the views in the area in addition to being more transit-appropriate.

A view of the corner from early 2022
The view today looking wildly different, with elevator towers now well above ground
A rendering shows off the final design from CosciaMoos

As you can see in the photo above, there is another building rising just next door. At 918 N. Broad St., another mixed-use project is changing the face of the intersection. A forgettable-if-not-ugly building stood here before, but 49-units over retail will soon take its place. We hadn’t seen any renderings until just recently, but we are happy to say that this CANNO-designed mid-rise building from Trinity Realty Companies will form an extremely handsome neighbor, opting for a more traditional look in contrast to the hyper-contemporary approach next door.

Three floors are above ground today
Five more floors to go on this symmetrical, white brick facade

We love seeing these projects rise in tandem, and we hope that their southern neighbors might get a similar treatment soon. 250 or so units are good, but adding another 96 would be even better, especially when some sad storefronts would be upgraded as a result.

96 units, retail, and no parking - the plans from 2018, still unrealized

We couldn’t help but notice one other very, uh, noticeable addition to the area. Just a short walk across Broad, 46 units from KJO Architecture are wrapping up at 1309 Cambridge St., further adding to the residential build-up on the corridor. This bold design brings a shock of green, which we happen to very much be into, especially as a contrast to the modernist, cubic design.

A burst of green, 46 units, and parking for 15 cars next to Warehouse on Watts
A rendering shows the green and gray facade treatment coming to the front

It makes us very happy to know that 300 more units will be within a quick walk to one of Philadelphia’s subway lines, not to mention the proximity to the transit lines along Girard Avenue. North Broad is continuing its rapid evolution, and we are all for a vibrant, bustling retail corridor instead of the car-heavy existence of the past. Besides, city views are much more enjoyable on foot than in the car.