When we were visiting the on-the-market Painted Bride the other day, we couldn’t help but hint at the crazy amount of action taking place along just one block of Vine St. in Old City. As we peered west from the corner of N. 2nd & Vine, we were struck by just how many things have changed here over the last several years. We were so taken aback, in fact, that we think the view deserves another look.

Looking west from 2nd & Vine not even a decade back
The same view today

While some of the new units in view finished up several years ago, today we are going to visit a trio of red-brick beauties that are nearing completion. We start first at 244 N. 2nd St., where the former Snyderman’s gas station has a decidedly different look than before. Eleven townhomes built by an OCF Realty affiliate and designed by Landmark Architectural Design are almost finished, with the newly poured sidewalks and paneling getting these four-bedroom homes ready for residents. These homes offer soaring ceilings, luxury finishes, and some awesome roof deck views for anyone looking to find their forever home.

Another look at the 11 four-bedroom townhomes at the end of the block
An interior rendering shows the open layout and finishes

We have to take only a couple steps west to 214 Vine St. to find our next stop. We last checked in here back in April 2022, when this 28-unit apartment building was being framed out with a somewhat unknown design in its future. Since then, 214 Vine has received its windows and brickwork, with the look from Moto Designshop taking the traditional brick of the neighborhood and redefining it. This building consists of one- and two-bedroom rental units, along with a roof deck that we would love to hang out on (hint hint).

Red brick, but make it modern: the front facade of 214 Vine
Expansive city views from the expansive deck

We need to look just across the street to find the penultimate burgundy building on the block. 209 Vine St. was also getting under way when we last stopped by nearly two years back, but we are happy to see that things are getting close here as well. 49 units and plenty of amenities coming to this building called – get this – 209 Vine. Greythorne Development is leading the charge here, with the cool design from Canno awaiting just one more portion on its eastern side to finish things up. The look here is a contemporary take on the industrial character of the area, with the large windows and finishes reminiscent of the neighborhood’s past. The interiors couldn’t be more different, with a moody, refined look that contrasts with the rugged exteriors. A ground-floor parking garage is also available for these one-, two-, and three-bedroom units.

The view of 209 Vine as seen from Vine St.
The north side of the building as seen from the linear park
Interior rendering shows off the natural tones inside

88 units on the way (Shoutout Eric Lindros) for one block is quite the density boost. And from where we stand (literally), this is a much better street presence than in the past, as 2nd St. continues to develop between the upper reaches of Old City and the start of the Northern Liberties corridor past Spring Garden St. to the north. In fact, you can even see the next round of development at 2nd & Spring Garden, where the Noble is visible beyond the overpasses.

Recent development on 2nd, with the Noble peering between the overpasses

To say this is different than the desolate, dusty past along this stretch is putting it mildly. The addition of the protected bike lane also makes this a much more friendly place for those not in a car, and it could become even more so in the future. There are plans for a tandem tower to the Noble, bringing 397 units to 2nd & Callowhill, which could also see a new public art space (sadly in conjunction with I-95 expansion plans). This is also happening with other projects just blocks away that are reconnecting these same neighborhoods. While this is most certainly a change from the gritty character of the not-so-distant past, strolling this stretch is absolutely a more pleasant affair today than it was not so long ago.