Krakus Meats first opened in Wissinoming many years ago, and Krakus Market opened in the early 90s in Port Richmond, to more thoroughly serve the local Polish community and the neighborhood as a whole. In many cultures, food is central to traditions and Krakus didn’t disappoint in that regard. The market served up kielbasa, pierogi, and other ethnic foods, while functioning as an anchor for people of Polish descent in the region to help keep their traditions going, especially around holidays.
Sadly, the market closed its doors at 3150 Richmond St. in the summer of 2018. The place had a great run and maybe it was just time for this business to close. It’s also possible that the significant construction on Richmond Street and nearby I-95 took a toll. We have to think that the closing of the market in 2018 might have been a blessing in disguise for the owners, as COVID would have surely made for a very difficult time for Krakus, as has been the case with small businesses all over the world.
In getting out of the grocery business, the family that owned the market also got out of the real estate business, selling their property for $690K. Developers ended up getting a zoning variance to build a two-story addition on top of the existing building, and that work is currently ongoing. When it’s finished, the building will have retail on the first floor and 15 apartments upstairs. You can see the construction from I-95, but we elected to snap some photos from Richmond Street, in the interest of not getting run over by oncoming traffic.
This is a nice project, as it will add some density and a fresh and sizable retail space to the Richmond Street corridor. For the last few years, we’ve touted Port Richmond as the more affordable option when compared to Fishtown or East Kensington and we’ve seen it slowly gain traction in terms of new development. But the commercial corridor has come along slowly, with only a handful of new businesses opening. We suspect things will continue to slowly build on Richmond Street and in Port Richmond in general, and the corridor will slowly grow as more development occurs and more people move in nearby.