Permits Issued for Six-Unit Building at 3849 North Broad Street in Hunting Park, North Philadelphia

3849 North Broad Street. Looking east. Credit: Google Maps3849 North Broad Street. Looking east. Credit: Google Maps

Permits have been issued for the construction of a three-story, six-unit building at 3849 North Broad Street in Hunting Park, North Philadelphia. The property is located on the east side of the block between West Butler Street and West Pike Street. The building will occupy a 2,300-square-foot footprint and will include 5,278 square feet of interior space. Permits list 3845 North Broad Street LLC as the owner, Lee Elsey as the design professional, and Fine Print Construction LLC as the contractor. Construction costs are listed at $705,000.

The building will rise on a vacant site situated among a row of exquisitely ornate, if dilapidated, prewar rowhouses. The vacant lot spans several properties, and, judging by the proposal’s square footage and the owner’s LLC listing 3845 rather than 3849 in its name, it is probable that the structure will span the entire vacant lot, filling in a gap in the street wall that has marred the streetscape for well over a decade.

As a rule of thumb, Philadelphia developers erected the proudest and best-adorned rowhouses along major thoroughfares, and the rowhome assembly on the block underscores the trend. The buildings boast red brick facades deep front porches, second-story bay windows, triple arcade windows at eh third story, ornate escutcheons and tiled roof overhangs at the cornice, and ogee-curved pinnacles that alternate between every other house.

Unfortunately, over the years many of these rowhouses have suffered from numerous alterations and persist in a rather dilapidated state. Given that the area is predominantly low-income, it is understandable that the residents could not afford to splurge on expensive historic restorations for their properties. However, we do hope that any future renovations at the existing buildings would restore them to their former glory. If we are to do so without displacing the current residents, the city ought to establish a fund that subsidizes such renovations for architecturally distinguished buildings such as these.

We also hope that any future development in the area spares these architectural gems and instead takes place on ample available land on surrounding properties, such as at the sprawling parking lot across the street. We do anticipate further development on this stretch, given its five-minute walking distance to Temple University Hospital, the Germantown Avenue commercial corridor, and the Erie Station on the Broad Street Line, which offers a rapid commute to Temple University, Center City, and other destinations.

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2 Comments on "Permits Issued for Six-Unit Building at 3849 North Broad Street in Hunting Park, North Philadelphia"

  1. As I understand it, the developer is planning on adding an additional building and updating the existing buildings (3845-3849)?
    The address did not match the picture until I noticed the range of properties involved.

    Once again, this brief well written story pretty much sums up the details.

    With the exception of a typo, Vitali wrote a solid, well articulated story.

  2. Thanks guys for writing such a great story on my development . I am the owner and developer of these three lots. We are very excited to build 18 units of good clean and affordable housing for the residents in the community. These type development are needed in these under develop area in the City. We believe that safe,clean,and affordable housing can also help reduce gun violence, save lives and raise the property value of our homes in the City of Philadelphia. Fine Print Companies and Fine Print Construction is a certified MBE/DBE firm. We are very excited to share our journey.

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