Before yesterday, we’d never been to the 4500 block of Sansom St., but based on some of the blocks that surround it and a couple of buildings at the end of the street, we were not optimistic about its condition.

On 46th St.

Also on 46th St.

We were a little surprised by just how nice the block is, with several properties having sold in the high $300K range in recent years. One property on the block, 4531 Sansom St., is currently on the market for $389K. The Penn Alexander catchment ends on the south side of this block, but many of the properties that have sold for decent money in recent years sit on the north side of the street. Hmmm.

Two zoning applications drew us to this block, for new triplexes at 4530 and 4534 Sansom St. The owners of the property, Partnership CDC, are affordable housing developers who have constructed affordable rental and for sale properties over the years in West Philadelphia. They also organize events and engage in numerous community education efforts.

The two lots

Because of the involvement of Partnership CDC, we’re assuming that these new units will be target people eligible for affordable housing. We’re imagining that the neighbors, particularly the people who live in the home in between the two lots, will be happy to have the breaks in the block filled in and get some new neighbors.

Whenever these homes end up getting built, we’re just hoping that the kids who live there are able to attend their neighborhood school, Penn Alexander. It seems that’s no longer a sure thing.