We’ve highlighted Lancaster Ave. a few times in the past, wondering whether the diagonal route to the Main Line could see increased revitalization west of 38th Street at some point in the near future. With a street like this, with so many amazing buildings that are not exactly in pristine shape after years of neglect, patience will be the name of the game. And so it is on Lancaster Avenue, that baby steps are still steps worth noting.
Take for instance, 3842 Lancaster Ave., a former corner gas station. Developer Ramy Shraim bought this run-down corner earlier this year for $87,500.
A couple of weeks ago, Mr. Shraim went before the ZBA with a proposal to demolish the leftover gas station, which is a blighting influence on this corner, and replace with with a three-unit residential building. Though the property, along with the rest of the block, is zoned for commercial, the number of strictly residential units nearby make this seem like a reasonable request. As an added perk to residents in the building, Shraim intends to construct a workout room in the basement of this building. No word on whether he’ll be using old gas tanks for weights down there.
Though the ZBA’s decision was held for thirty days to wait for a letter from the community, we suspect this proposal will ultimately be approved. And just imagine, a few more baby steps like this, and perhaps Lancaster Avenue will start taking some bigger steps. If we may offer Hawthorne Hall, one of our favorite buildings in the city, as a candidate for a little fixin’ up when the time’s right? We imagine the (likely) student renters across the street will appreciate an improved view out their windows…