It was almost exactly two years ago that we brought a development opportunity to your attention at 1713-15 Fairmount Ave., after we noticed 'For Sale' signs posted on an old garage and vacant lot next door to Stone's Beverage Center. About a year and a half later, we learned that MJL Properties had jumped on the property, and had plans for a four-story mixed-use building with ground floor retail and parking, and ten apartments on the upper floors. Checking in on the project today, we see that the old garage has been demolished and a fresh foundation has appeared.
Not only will this new project fit in well with the mixed-use building immediately to its west, but it will also continue a recent theme for this stretch of Fairmount Avenue. Remember, we've seen three projects happen around these parts in the last year or so. Moving from east to west, MM Partners has been working to renovate the long-vacant Country Fresh Market building at the corner of 17th & Fairmount into seventeen lofts, and a Valley Green Bank branch opens today at the corner. On the south side of the 1700 block, 1720 Fairmount has eighteen apartments in a brand new building and the three-month-old Bar Hygge on the first floor. Not to be outdone, the former Mortgage Security Building at 18th & Fairmount got some sweet new windows last year, though we confess we still don't know what business will be moving into this revitalized building.
Fairmount Avenue is experiencing a major resurgence, and it's no coincidence that it comes in concert with a development explosion immediately to the north in Francisville. This boom is echoed nearby on Ridge Avenue, though that corridor has much work to do in order to approach the retail diversity on Fairmount Avenue. Perhaps as soon as a few years from now though, Ridge will be able to bridge some of that gap.