A reader reached out to us the other day, wondering what had happened to the building at the northwest corner of 8th & Jefferson. This building had been home to Victory Through Christ Outreach Ministries, though we suspect the building was originally constructed with a store on the first floor and an apartment upstairs. The years didn’t treat the edifice especially well, with small windows filling larger window openings, a mix of stucco and Formstone on the front facade, and a mess on the southern facade. This may have been a lovely building once upon a time, but we can’t say we’re sorry it was demolished given its condition over the last number of years.
With the property now vacant, we can tell you that developers Prestige Design Properties are the new owners, having bought the building last summer for $215K. Their plan for the property is to construct a mixed-use building with three apartments upstairs and retail on the first floor. This mixed-use plan consistent with the approach that we’ve seen from this developer in several other properties in this vicinity. If you’re curious as to what the new building will look like, it’s probably safe to assume it’ll look just like the others from this developer, down to the words “Prestige Pavilion” above the front door. Gotta give them credit, they’re very consistent.
Since we were setting foot on the 1500 block of N. 8th St. for the first time ever, we took a moment to explore our surroundings and try to understand some of the block’s recent history. We were amazed to learn that this block had only 9 buildings as recently as 2007- today it’s almost completely full. The bulk of the development on the block happened about a decade ago, as a number of for-sale affordable housing units were built, covering most of the eastern side of the block and also filling some gaps on the western side. More recently, the block has seen some new construction of the multi-family variety, and we have to think that these units will be rented out with Temple students as the target market.
Similar to the project at 9th & Diamond which we covered recently, these smaller developments are an example of development pushing eastward from the area around Temple, and westward from South Kensington. As land becomes more scarce in both of those areas, figure we’ll see additional development in this part of town, which still has more than its share of vacancy.