The southern portion of Northern Liberties, situated between Center City and North Philadelphia, is located between Spring Garden Street, Interstate 95, the Vine Street Expressway, and 9th Street. The area has notoriously languished as a dead zone for years, comprised of surface lots and industrial buildings, save for a few surviving pre-war artifacts. To the south sits one of Philadelphia’s most desirable neighborhoods, Old City, where history permeates every block. To the north, the core portion of Northern Liberties also features rich history while showing a trendy and modern flare that makes it one of Philadelphia’s hottest neighborhoods. A massive amount of development has taken place in recent years in these two districts, making it even more surprising that the abysmal area between the two has remained as it has for such a long period of time. Thanks to a collection of recent announcements for planned developments, however, this looks to be changing in a big way in the near future. With the recent flurry of announcements, Philly YIMBY makes a brief overview of the proposals.
Over the course of the past year, Philadelphia YIMBY has provided continuous updates on East Market Phase 3 at 1101-53 Chestnut Street, the latest addition to the East Market development that has transformed the Market East neighborhood in Center City over the past few years. But even as construction work kicked into high gear, plans for the development continued to evolve. Earlier this year, we published an extensive review of the development’s original iteration. Developed by National Real Estate Development, it consisted of the 364-foot-tall Jefferson Health Specialty Care Pavilion at 1101 Chestnut Street, and a smaller, 288-foot-tall residential tower planned to the west. Today we look at the plan’s latest version, which updates the design for the medical tower and puts the residential component on hold, replacing it with a public plaza for the time being.
J.G Petrucci Co. Inc. and Petrucci Residential, the developers and owners of The Station at Willow Grove at 91 North York Road in Willow Grove, PA, have recently announced that the mixed-use development is now fully leased. Located four miles north of the Philadelphia city line, the five-story development holds 20,000 square feet of ground-level retail and 275 rental residential units. Construction costs were estimated at $75 million. The building sits across from the Willow Grove Station on the SEPTA Warminser Line, which offers direct commute to Center City. As such, the project is a positive example of dense, pedestrian-friendly development that should be encouraged throughout the area’s rail-serviced suburban towns.
Construction work is underway at The Elm, a 111-unit mixed-use development situated at 2079 North 63rd Street in Overbrook, West Philadelphia. Designed by Continuum Architecture and developed by Rock Development, the building will rise five stories tall, and will include five separate commercial spaces on the ground floor. A green roof will be situated at the top of the building, and 42 parking spaces will be located underneath the rear side of the structure. Tester Construction is the contractor for the project.
In the early 1900s, construction has just finished at Philadelphia City Hall (completed in 1901), with the clock tower dominating Center City. The skyline was not yet filled with massive towers. Instead, low- and mid-rise buildings made up the urban landscape. At the time, the city was growing rapidly, and a new generation of notable buildings was completed by the turn of the 20th century, including City Hall and the Masonic Temple. Today Philly YIMBY presents massing renderings of the Philadelphia skyline as it appeared all the way back in 1905.