Renovation For a Long Blighted Building at 15th & Fitzwater

A decade ago, when the Graduate Hospital neighborhood still had more than its fair share of blight, the sight of a vacant building didn't really cause anybody to think twice. Today, it's a different story, with demand for homes in this neighborhood at an all time high and developers vying for an increasingly short supply of potential projects. This was pretty much the case a couple years ago too, when we wondered about the vacant building at the southeast corner of 15th & Fitzwater. Here's a look at the building in 2009, to give you an idea of why it caught our attention:

The view in 2009

The property is owned by the family that owns the Slater Funeral Home, located next door on the 1400 block of Fitzwater Street. They acquired the property over 35 years ago, but we couldn't tell you what kind of condition it was in back then. Perhaps in response to a violation, the owners installed some actual windows a couple years back to make the building seem less vacant, but we're pretty confident that it has remained empty in the years since then. But that situation seems to be changing.

Current view

Yes, that's a construction fence around the building. According to permits, the property is getting converted into a three-unit apartment building. With easy access to South Broad Street and the ever-improving South Street West, we've got no doubt these units will be in high demand. Plus, who doesn't want to live in a sweet looking building? One detraction though, could be some upcoming construction.

This seems promising

We told you before, the same folks that own the building at the corner own the vacant lot next door at 737 S. 15th St., having bought it from the City for $2,500 back in 2002. And though we don't see any permits for a project just yet, the fact that we spotted some heavy equipment over there gives us a sense that something could be coming here. It's worth noting, they could build a triplex here by right, or could simply opt for a single family home.

Speaking of single family homes, there's a new one that's almost finished just a couple doors down, at the corner of 15th & Clymer. This home replaces a building that collapsed back in 2011, a situation that thankfully resulted in no injuries.

New home a few doors down, site of building collapse in 2011

With the rehab at 739 S. 15th St. currently listed for sale for $700K, we can only imagine what the new construction corner home with two car parking will sell for. With some amazement, we'd bet on something approaching seven figures.