Monthly Archives: April 2013

Split-Levels Replacing Pain Center

Front elevation

How it will look like. Courtesy the Philadelphia Real Estate Blog.

The Philadelphia Real Estate Blog got us a first look last week at the new split-levels replacing the Pain Center at 12th and Lombard, a rather dated 1970s-era structure.

How it looks today. Courtesy Philaphilia.

Designed by ubiquitous local architects Harman Deutsch, these structures will come with a 2-car rear garage with decks on top, as well as the firm’s idiosyncratic design. We’ll have more details as and we learn about them!

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A New Restaurant For the Kimmel Center?

As reported on Plan Philly, the Art Commission has given its final approval for a proposed new restaurant facing Spruce Street in the Kimmel Center.

Designed by the KieranTimberlake firm, this restaurant will be a Jose Garces (of Amada, Tinto, Distrito, Chifa, Village Whiskey, Garces Trading Company, JG Domestic fame, and Iron Chef) venture.

Watch this site for more details as soon as they come!

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Awesome Reno in East Passyunk

The Philadelphia Real Estate Blog has impressed us with this East Passyunk reno. Highlights include:

an entirely new façade and a three-story extension at the back of the house…a circular balcony at the front of the second story as well as a projecting circular bay at the front of the third level of the house…a three-story addition tacked on to [the courtyard side of the house]

in their words. Here’s what it looks like:

1544 S 13th St.

Fresh Start Enterprises is the contractor handling the work, and by the looks of it somebody will soon have an awesome East Passyunk home we’d want to live in. Nice, eh?

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Growlers Coming to Bella Vista

The chefs behind Time and Vintage Wine, and the non-Starr part of Dandelion and El Vez, are bringing a new restaurant to the old Vesuvio at 8th and Fitzwater in Bella Vistareports Foobooz. Growlers is its name, and it puts us in a gastropub mood.

The former Vesuvio. Courtesy Foobooz.

Jerry Donahue, recent champ of Yards Brewing’s Smoke ‘Em If Yous Got ‘Em beer-and-BBQ festival, will be the kitchen mastermind behind this new idea.

As opening date moves closer, expect us to have more information!

Mmm beer-flavored barbeque…

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New Development in Hawthorne

Could we soon see activity at 714 South 11th Street in Hawthorne? Naked Philly sure seems to think so.

The site. Courtesy Naked Philly.

Appealingly close to both Bella Vista and the Italian Market, this rowhome has sat vacant for a while. Recently sited by L&I’s Doors and Windows violation, it has a new owner with a Plan: Flatten it, and put new homes here and on Jessup. Both would have roof decks and garages.

Our advice for this new development in Hawthorne: Keep the nice façade, kill the 11th street garage. We’ve seen it done elsewhere.

We’ll keep you posted on new developments!

…Oh, and 11th Street, you need more trees.

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Fante-Leon Pool Replaced by Triplex

The old swimming pool. Courtesy Naked Philly.

Gone is the old Fante-Leon Pool, once one of Bella Vista‘s premier recreation sites, and its beautiful 1920s brickwork. In its place rises, reports Naked Philly, what (according to L&I) will be a triplex.

New…and green! (Literally.) Courtesy Naked Philly.

Shame about the façade, but may we recommend its location? Just off the Italian Market, the single most awesome business district in a city stuffed with awesome business districts, chock full of fresh, delicious, local produce, meats, and cheeses. And we couldn’t forget about all that excellent Vietnamese food down on Washington! Mmmm food heaven…

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The Problem With Triangle Park

Triangle Park in better days. Courtesy Naked Philly.

Bella Vista’s Triangle Park, at the intersection of 6th and Christian Streets and Passyunk Avenue, is a small, beautiful plot of green in a neighborhood boasting several small, beautiful plots of green. It, however, also sits satisfyingly right in the middle of the neighborhood, surrounded by beautiful houses, cafés, and other small business.

Oh, and it’s privately owned.

That’s why the owner fenced it in earlier this summer, in an “attempt to signal its availability”, despite its half-decade of cheerful local use, much to the displeasure of the neighborhood–a neighborhood which has been working to acquire the parcel so it can stay a park ever and anon…

The overgrown site. Courtesy Naked Philly

But wait, there’s more! According to this Naked Philly piece, the parcel was a gas station before the community covered it with greenery. And gas station sites tend to have nasty underground surprises, particularly for verdanture atop. Environmental sampling and (likely) remediation has to be done before the property can be conveyed, which has to happen before the fencing can come down–remediation which would also destroy the landscaping already in place.

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Dilworth House

A brouhaha on Washington Square? Yes indeed–for the better part of a decade now, a major condo proposal has lingered on its east side, behind 1950s-mayor Richardson Dilworth’s former residence, bisecting the two halves of the Athenaeum. This Turchi offering, including an expansion of that storied institution into Dilworth’s house financed by a 15-story Robert Venturi-designed condo structure behind, has caught the attention (and wrath) of preservation advocates, and a long train of Plan Philly stories.

Update: Commonwealth Court upholds Dilworth House appeal

The proposal. Courtesy Plan Philly.

So, as the developer and the community fight one another, the site sits, a minor black hole on the square’s duller east side.

Stay tuned–we will have more information as and when court rulings happen it becomes available!

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New Condos In Society Hill

 

Traditionally suburban home developer Toll Brothers–of Naval Square fame–has set its sights on Society Hill, with a 69 unit, 68 feet tall condo unit by Headhouse Square, in the NewMarket site, as Plan Philly reports. With red brick and limestone wainscoting, this structure is deeply respectful of its historic surroundings.

Designed and contracted in-house, this project will also feature a small public space on the Headhouse Square side. Take a look at the renders and see for yourself.

Nevertheless, some near neighbors remain opposed to the structure: parking and sunlight issues have been brought up. Considering the rather vexed history of this site, we here are crossing our fingers and hoping everything gets worked out, and they are allowed to build.

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Big Changes Coming to Columbus Hall

Beautiful historic Columbus Hall, recently home to Ma Ma Yolanda’s, is getting some big new changes. According to the zoning permit, part of the fire tower is being demolished, with a large 4th floor addition being added to the rear and a roof deck out in front–this is coming as the whole structure is renovated to a nine family dwelling.

Beautiful building

We’re looking forward to the re-use of this grand Bella Vista icon and the potential for this stretch of 8th Street. With the incoming Growlers just a few doors down, gorgeous Cianfrani Park just up the street – one where we’re often known to hang – and hopefully a new coffee shop on the southeast side of 8th and Fitzwater, we’re sure that the people who move here will be more than a little pleased with their surroundings.

Cianfrani Park

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