As we’ve told you before, Port Richmond is a great neighborhood, if a little off the beaten path relative to downtown. It’s got a commercial corridor on Richmond Street that’s seeing incremental improvement, while still having several holdover businesses that cater to the local Polish community. It’s close to Fishtown but considerably more affordable. And for commuters going to the suburbs or coming to Center City, I-95 literally runs alongside the neighborhood. All of this adds up to a noticeable uptick in development in this neighborhood, generally of the one-off variety.

This is why we were a little surprised to learn about a zoning application at 3011 Edgemont St., an address that’s roughly two blocks off the commercial corridor. There’s an old warehouse currently on the property which historic maps indicate was used for “barrels” at one point in its history. The appearance of the front of the building is rather mediocre, but the back of the building is actually pretty nice looking. But don’t get used to it, because the developers buying the property are planning to tear down the entire building.

View on Edgemont St.
Looking down Elkhart St.
Much nicer building from the rear

According to the zoning application, the the plans call for a five-story building with 32 apartments, 14 car parking spots inside the building, and 11 bike parking spaces. Assuming the project gets approved, this will be the largest residential project to appear in Port Richmond in recent memory, and it could prove useful as a template for future projects in the neighborhood. There are so many old warehouse buildings nearby and if this project proves to be a success, we could see other developers take note and try to replicate the model. This would, in turn, mean good things for the commercial corridor, as additional density in the neighborhood would make it more attractive to businesses. This would probably lead to higher rents and sale prices in the years to come. In other words, now might be the time to get in on Port Richmond, before it’s too late.