Just about anyone who’s walked around Philadelphia for a day would agree that we live in a city of murals. Whether they’re sprucing up blank walls downtown or serving as placeholders until vacant land can be developed, these works of public art make our city more vibrant, more interesting, and more cultured. In addition, the Mural Arts Program has impacted the lives of thousands of kids over the years, working both as an educational institution and as a community service program for juvenile delinquents.

Winter: Crystal Snowscape in Bella Vista

We mostly find ourselves reporting on murals being covered up by new development, like “Autumn,” once located two blocks away from the mural pictured above, or the Noam Chomsky mural now covered on Fairmount Avenue. So it brings us special pleasure to take the opposite approach today and tell you about a new mural that went up last week on the 1900 block of Alter Street. And this mural seems unlikely to disappear anytime soon. You may recall, five new homes were built on this street last year.

The new homes

While residences fill the southern side of this block, the north side is almost exclusively warehouses. Some of these buildings front Alter, but most are just rear access for buildings fronting Washington Avenue. Not exactly the prettiest view out your front window, ya know? Which is why Mial Incorporated, the folks who built the five new homes pictured above, and OCF Realty, the company that listed and sold the homes, collaborated on a little project to improve the block for everyone. Check it out.

Five more new homes? Not so much.

Closer look. Check out those cornices!

Another look

As you can see, the whimsical mural depicts five row homes painted on the warehouse walls. We’re particularly fond of how two existing (and functioning) doors were incorporated into the design as well as the plant in the window of the easternmost home. And might we add, the chimney above the red house looks like it fits right in.

If you’re in the area sometime, we suggest you check this one out in person. It’s really amazing just how much personality this mural imparts to this little Point Breeze block.

Disclosure: OCF Realty is the parent company of Naked Philly.