When you think of 5th & Girard, on the border of the Northern Liberties, Poplar, and South Kensington neighborhoods, you may not realize that this intersection is home to the National Shrine of St. John Neumann. This grand church is the resting place for this ordained saint, with the spire and church bells at St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church standing out amongst the rest of the corridor. And while this building is indeed lovely, we’re here today to visit 1026-28 N. 5th St., the brick building that sits just across the street to the west.

The steeple of the National Shrine of St. John Neumann, with 1026-28 N. 5th in the foreground

The red-brick building on the SW corner started life over a century ago as a bank before becoming home to M London Furniture in 1938 after a move from 52nd St. in West Philly. But after an 85+ year run, the long-time owners are deciding to move on from this four-story, 12K sqft building, putting it on the market for $1.2 million. While the building is missing its pointed roofline and cornice from its hey-day, tons of the window details and brick still give the oodles of charm to this day.

The building at 1026-28 N. 5th St. as it looks today
5thGir-02 1962
The same corner, M. London Furniture back in 1962
Another view today along 5th St.
A closer look at the gorgeous details along the Girard facade
A look at the upper floor interior spaces

This CMX-2 property could be quite appealing given its charm and location along the trolley lines and its proximity to everything happening in Northern Liberties and South Kensington. It would be even more appealing if it was more appropriately zoned as CMX-2.5/3, but we digress. We still expect a buyer to come forward at some point and pursue adaptive reuse, so keep your eyes peeled. Incidentally, there’s plenty of other action if you look to the west, with a pair of recently finished apartments a block away, and another intriguing development possibility at the former Everybody Hits batting cage/music venue hybrid across the street.

Contemporary apartments now finished towards 7th & Girard
The former Everybody Hits spot at 6th & Girard, still awaiting its next phase

It is pretty amazing how much is happening along the stretch of Girard from Front to Broad Street. The return of the trolley, mixed with an influx of residential action has really changed a stretch that was quite unfriendly to residents and pedestrians, adding density and local businesses as the same has happened on either side of the street. We are thrilled to see things continue to densify as Girard continues to call those from far and wide towards its residential/mixed-use future.