Seemingly every day, more and more of greater Center City – defined here as river to river, from Girard Ave. to the north and Tasker St. to the south – becomes denser, with vacant lots, parking lots, and other underutilized spaces biting the dust. The property at 1823 Callowhill St. is rising on one of those former lots, where The Baldwin is adding 57 one- and two-bedroom apartments to the fold. As you can see below, this block has been screaming for an upgrade as the surrounding area has gone through some major changes over the last several years.

We checked in back in March, when signs of verticality were just starting to show for this project. Things have clearly been moving since then for this project from Orens Brothers, as the building is topped out and most of the upper facade is installed. Work is still very much on-going, and you can see it start to resemble the design from Wulff Architects, which has utilized a modular construction approach. A fresh food grocer and two other retail spaces will take up the ground floor, continuing the recent retail trend for this property, which was home to a beer garden a couple summers back.

...and the same view today, showing things much further along
Looking northwest at 1823 Callowhill, from back in March
A rendering from the same view shows things progressing as designed
A view of the front courtyard, still very much a work in progress
The future streetscape at dusk will be much more welcoming
Western facade getting closer to completion
Rendering shows off the same view, sans chain-link fence

We aren’t necessarily blown away by the panel-heavy design, but this is most certainly a big step up for this CMX-2.5 zoned lot. Last time we were here, we were pining for some development action on the east side of the lot at the very large parcel at 1801 Callowhill, and that hasn’t happened yet and probably won’t any time soon. Today, we’re moseying our way to the west. A now-closed Rose Tattoo Cafe sits on the northeast corner of 19th & Callowhill, with a fenced-off surface lot sitting between the former cafe and the new building. Both the building and the surface lot are owned by the same long-time owner (who lives just around the corner), and clearly nothing has happened here since a confusing multi-family proposal half a decade ago.

The western neighbors of The Baldwin

Will we see either of these empty spaces get a revamp at some point? We would imagine that the developers and residents of this new building hope so, as it would add even more life to this increasingly bustling area of the Logan Square neighborhood.