The last few years have been a bit of a roller coaster ride for 563 N. 20th St., a building on the northeast corner of 20th & Brandywine. For many years, it sat in a relatively unloved state, housing Park Grocery Co. on the first floor. Just looking at an image from 2009, we can't tell whether the business was still active or whether the storefront had been dark for a decade. Perhaps someone who lives nearby remembers?
It seems that developers purchased the building in 2010, renovating the entire structure and creating two residential condo units and a commercial condo on the first floor. In 2013, we told you about plans for Momoyo, a frozen yogurt that also strangely advertised the sale of cotton candy and dog treats. The business opened and quickly got shut down because of a zoning issue. When they eventually reopened, they installed some funky, ultra-contemporary plastic panels around the entrance to the storefront, covering up the original signage.
The business didn't last very long, and when they closed down the panels disappeared, revealing the old signage. Given the historic nature of the neighborhood, we wonder how those panels were allowed in the first place.
We passed by this building the other day and noticed that a new tenant has taken over the ground-floor space. Dog School, a company that claims to be the oldest doggie daycare in Philadelphia, opened their fourth location here a few months ago, joining spots in Rittenhouse, Northern Liberties, and Wash West. They also have plans to open another location in a long-vacant space on the 1300 block of South Street. But we're mostly bringing this place to your attention because of the excellent signage.
Yup, they got someone to paint their sign with the same layout and in the same font as the sign from the old grocery. And whoever they hired did an awesome job. At the very least, we'll consider it an upgrade over the shiny plastic panels of a couple years ago.