Several readers reached out last week, excitedly sharing the news about some demolition happening at the Grays Ferry & Carpenter intersection. We knew that this couldn’t be happening on the southwest corner, as that property is owned by the Veolia plant around the corner and contains several large large tanks of who knows what. The northwest corner has some newer homes, so we figured it was an unlikely candidate. And then our hearts lept. We’ve been frustrated by the blighted building on the southeast corner for many years, complaining about it in a post in 2013. At the time, we noted that the back of the property had collapsed and we wondered whether the rest could follow. According to L&I though, that wasn’t going to happen. Still, every time we passed this building, we felt our blood pressure rise.
We visited the intersection the other day and holy moly, the place is getting torn down.
According to public record, the same people that have owned the property since 1983 are still the owners. Looking at the permits, it’s pretty clear that this isn’t a City ordered demolition, like we expected several years ago. We’d wager that developers have purchased this building but it hasn’t been reflected in public record, and they are tearing it down with plans to build a new home in its place. But wait, there’s more demolition!
A two-story townhome on the northeast corner of this intersection is also getting demolished. For this one, public record clearly shows that it’s in the hands of new owners. From the looks of it, this parcel can accommodate two new homes. Given the triangular shape of the property, look for an oddly shaped home at the corner. Alternately, a three or four unit building might make sense here as well, despite the single-family zoning.
Now that we think about it, we’ve seen several multi-family projects pop up on this stretch of Grays Ferry Avenue. Not only are the properties across the street zoned as such, but several developers have successfully gotten variances to build apartments, with a fine example being the building in the photo above, on the southeast corner of Grays Ferry & Kimball. And don’t forget, a pair of duplexes on Grays Ferry will be included as part of the Graduate Square project which we last visited back in December, as demolition was moving forward. So what will we see at the Grays Ferry & Carpenter intersection? Honestly, we don’t care. We’re just glad to see that a long blighted building is finally meeting its maker. Certainly took long enough.