Nobody would argue the point that Delancey Street in Center City is one of Philadelphia's ritziest addresses, which makes the perpetual blight at the corner of 18th & Delancey all the more striking. We first brought 325 S. 18th St. to your attention almost five years ago, but we've had our eye on the property for over a decade. At one point, we even dreamt of buying the property at sheriff's sale, since it was tax delinquent to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars (but not anymore). We were deeply depressed to see that someone had apparently purchased the property for $150K back in 2008, but according to a 2013 story from Inga Saffron that was a bogus deed transfer and the building has been in the hands of a woman named Teresa Isabella since the 1970s. And Ms. Isabella has been a remarkably awful property owner for as long as many neighbors can remember.
In 2012, we were hopeful that the property was finally getting fixed up. But alas, passing by earlier this week, we saw a building that still looks terrible.
In the previously mentioned Inga Saffron story from a couple of years ago, Inga was able to get in touch with the property owner and her attorney. At the time, Isabella claimed that she was actively fixing up the property. Looking at permits, we see that some expired permits have been renewed within the last year but as far as we can tell from the outside, the building looks as bad as it's looked for years. The list of old and new violations on the property is a mile long, too long even to capture in one screen grab.
Neighbors, have you seen any work happening here of late? Do you have any hope that the building will get renovated in your lifetime? People who don't necessarily live nearby, are you as surprised as we are that this building has remained perpetually vacant and blighted? Should its prominent location make it more of a priority for City agencies to do something (if there's anything to do, even), or is it no different from any of the thousands of other vacant properties in Philadelphia?