We stumbled upon a Demolition Notice the other day, just a few steps away from the intersection of 16th & Girard. This notice portends an upcoming demolition for a pair of buildings that have housed a church for the last couple decades, though this is no standard church setup. We believe the congregation was initially based in the two-story converted row home at 1221 N. 16th St., but took the opportunity to expand into a former auto garage next door at some point in its history. This is certainly an unusual combination of buildings and use, one that we can’t say we remember seeing anywhere else before.

Cool building
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Building next door also part of the church

Lest you think that the church is demolishing its longtime home and building something new, it appears that the congregation sold its real estate to developers a few years back and moved to the Northeast. Just because we know that developers have purchased the property though, doesn’t mean that we know what they have in store. At this point, we just see demolition permits and no zoning permits for the building or buildings which will eventually rise here. We do see that the lots have been consolidated, which means there will soon be a vacant lot here which covers roughly 6,500 sqft.

Construction around the corner on Stiles Street

The property is zoned for multi-family use, which means the developers will likely build a by-right apartment building here. Using a couple different bonuses, they could build 25 units without going to the ZBA. Or they don’t want to use bonuses they could alternately build five duplexes, also by right, though that would seem like an odd approach after consolidating the lots. Given the close proximity to Francisville to the south and the relative proximity to Temple to the north, we imagine that whatever gets built here will target students. And we’d say the same about just about anything getting built in this area, including the quadplex currently under construction around the corner on Stiles Street. Since there’s still a significant amount of vacant land around here, figure there’s more new construction coming in the future which will likewise get built with students in mind.