In the spring of 2012, we first told you about plans from D3 Developers (a company that somehow doesn't employ anyone who was in any of the Mighty Ducks movies) to convert the former dye works at 100 W. Oxford St. into a mixed-use development called Oxford Mills. Back then, the building, which had most recently held a lamp design company, was sitting vacant and looking kind of rough. Today, it looks fantastic.
This project is unique in that it specifically targets teachers. According to the Philadelphia Business Journal, 60% of the 114 apartments in this building are available at discounted rates for educators. The remaining units are market rate. At this time, about three-quarters of the residential units in the building are leased.
In the building closer to the El, there's 40K sqft of office space for educational non-profits, of which almost all is spoken for. A cafe has also signed a lease for a space in the building, which is great news for residents and people who work in the building alike. From soup to nuts, this adaptive reuse is a big deal for this area and can hopefully serve as a model for bringing other warehouses in the neighborhood back into active use.
A self-fulfilling prophesy next door, new homes are already getting framed out on a long-vacant parcel. It's the beginning of a ten-home development from the same guys who did Oxford Mills. Would this kind of project be viable if the old warehouse was still sitting vacant? Maybe. But it certainly makes a great deal more sense with the renovation across the street. Look for this scene to be repeated all over the neighborhood as additional warehouses get a new lease on life. In due time, of course.