Fixer Upper: Buy This Mansion on Spruce Street, Get a Prime Parcel on Delancey Street

1726 Spruce Street | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach-Center City, Rittenhouse Hotel

Could this mansion at 1726 Spruce Street be the ultimate fixer upper in Philadelphia?

Hyperbole aside, there’s more to this deal than meets the eye. For one, the grand townhome features wonderful old Philly curb appeal, especially with the wrought iron detailing and black shutters. Sure, the home is in rough shape on the inside, but those with an eye for a luxury rehab can see that this place has everything–marble fireplace mantles, inlaid wood floors and intricate wood molding–to become a grand residence or a handful of super luxe condos.

The fixer upper aspect might not even be the most tantalizing part of the deal. The property spans through the block and includes a large undeveloped parcel that fronts Delancey Street–Philly’s most sought-after street.

Alright, admit it: Now you’re intrigued.

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Heavenly Pursuit: Saint Laurentius in Fishtown Could Become Apartments


It’s amazing what a difference a year can make, especially in the case of Saint Laurentius Church in Fishtown.

One year after facing the wrecking ball, developer Leo Voloshin has entered into an agreement of sale with the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to purchase the building and convert it into an as-yet unknown number of apartments. Jared Brey of PlanPhilly reports that there is the “overarching contingency on the agreement” is that Voloshin has to be able to make sure the project financially viable.

More from Brey:”[Voloshin] plans to meet with community groups and pursue zoning approvals over the next few months. Parts of the building will need expensive repairs, he said—though perhaps not as expensive as the Archdiocese has claimed in the past.” Voloshin also said the deal wouldn’t close unless he can’t get the necessary zoning approvals in place.

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Beyond the Gallery: Developers Snap up Three Properties on Market East

The Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia

The Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia

There’s an interesting wrinkle to the redevelopment of The Gallery at Market East into the Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia. PREIT and Macerich, the partnership developing the future outlet mall, have also purchased three properties across the street from the current downtrodden shopping center.

According to a report from The Inquirer’s Jacob Adelman, Joseph Coradino, PREIT’s cheif executive, said the plan is to find new tenants for these storefronts after the retailers at the Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia have been selected. They could be used to lure businesses who might not fit the plans of new shopping center, but want to be in and around the action. Remember, the East Market project is bringing apartments and gobs of retail to 11th and Market in the not-too-distant future–so there should be plenty of action in the coming years.

The Inky found out through city records that the pair bought the properties between 1010 and 1024 Market Street, which includes the wave-like Robinson department store building, under multiple (and difficult to identify) names in November 2014 for a combined $17.24 million.

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Jaw Dropper of the Week: Malvern Estate Flaunts Indoor/Outdoor Pool, Safe Room

TREND photos via BHHS Fox & Roach-Devon

TREND photos via BHHS Fox & Roach-Devon

We’re heading back out to the far reaches of the Main Line to re-introduce one of our favorite homes to you: Malvern’s Mistwood estate.

Believe it or not, it’s still on the market and now it carries a lighter price tag (good new for you!). You can snag the 11.3 acre property (that boasts an in-credi-ible indoor/outdoor pool) for $2,249,000–that’s a $441,000 price cut from when we featured it a year ago.

We fully realize your desire to ravenously pour over the gallery, but here’s a brief reminder about what’s included (spoiler alert: there’s a safe room).

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Councilman Squilla Introduces New Zoning to Ease Path for Hyde Hotel Project

Hyde hotel

Hyde Hotel | Rendering via Dranoff Properties, BLTa

Though Carl Dranoff’s plans to bring the SLS LUX hotel and residences to the corner of Broad and Spruce have been delayed by the state budget impasse, that hasn’t held him up from moving onto his other sbe-backed hotel project: the Hyde Hotel at Broad and Pine.

Jared Brey of PlanPhilly reports that Councilman Mark Squilla introduced two new bits of zoning legislation last week that would “remove some obstacles” for the project. One seeks to up zone the property from CMX-4 to CMX-5, the most permissive commercial zoning classification; the other would take care of issues with parking, loading, and roof decks.

The proposed 22-story building is seen as a “bookend” to the SLS Lux project, which occupies the northern corner of the 300 block of South Broad Street. It would rise 292 feet off of the street, and contain a mix 76 hotel rooms, approximately 83 apartments, a ground floor restaurant and an underground parking garage. The roof deck legislation comes into play due to a separate roof top restaurant and deck on the 23rd floor.

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Affordable Housing Complex for Artists Breaks Ground in West Philly

4050 Haverford Avenue } Rendering: PEC

4050 Haverford Avenue | Rendering: PEC

West Philly is about to get another apartment complex, but this time it’s not geared toward student foodies or young professionals with money to burn.

The People’s Emergency Center (PEC) broke ground on a new building today that will bring 20 units of affordable housing for artists and people in need. The site at 4050 Haverford Avenue is currently a vacant lot.

The project will cost $7.2 million, and PEC said they will begin work at the site on Wednesday in the hopes to having it completed by December of this year.

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LOVE Park: Ceremonial Groundbreaking Set for Wednesday

LOVE Park | Hargreaves and Associates

LOVE Park | Hargreaves and Associates

The $16.5 million revamp of JFK Plaza/LOVE Park will officially commence this Wednesday, as city officials and project partners will gather for a ceremonial groundbreaking at the iconic public square at 11 a.m.

It’s unclear when LOVE Park will officially close to the public. Construction is anticipated to begin in the spring and last 12 to 16 months.

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$24 Million Loan Arranged for Redevelopment of Former West Philadelphia High School

The former West Philadelphia High School | via Colliers

The former West Philadelphia High School | via Colliers

The redevelopment of the former West Philadelphia High School into an apartment building has been talked about for some time–the better part of four years–but there has been little to no movement on the project. It looks as though that could soon change.

Colliers International announced today that the company has arranged a $24 million loan for “the acquisition and redevelopment” of the shuttered school building at 47th and Walnut.

Strong Place Partners (SSP), a Brooklyn-based development company, had sought to turn the shuttered school building into a mixed-use property consisting of 298 loft-style apartments with ground floor retail. The firm first presented their plans back in 2012, and expected the building to be move-in ready by 2016.

Though the Office of Property Assessment still shows the School District of Philadelphia as the owner of the building, it lists WPHS Venture Partners LLC as the mailing address; its Brooklyn street address leads to a company called Heights Advisors. Their website describes the project at 4700 Walnut as a “gut rehabilitation,” and states construction will commence in 2017.  Representatives from Heights Advisors were not immediately available for comment.

So what’s been the hold up?

“The borrower wanted to purchase and reposition the former school located in West Philadelphia near University City,” said Kristopher Wood of Colliers International Capital Markets in a release, who along with CICM’s John Banas arranged the loan. “Getting a construction loan was challenging because this was the first development the New York developer had done in Philadelphia, and many thought the location was not ready for 298 new apartments.”

A lot has changed in four years, to say the least. Developers are betting big that University City will continue its ascension onto the national scene as a force for eds, meds, and technology, and they’ve been lining up multiple apartment projects to accommodate the influx of young professionals.

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Brandywine Realty Trust Unloads 58 Properties in Near $400 Million Deal

Brandywine Realty Trust expects to close on the sale of Cira Square this month | Google Street View

Brandywine Realty Trust expects to close on the sale of Cira Square this month | Google Street View

Brandywine Realty Trust has sold a large portfolio of properties to an affiliate of Och Ziff Capital Management Group LCC, according to a company release.

The complex deal–worth $398.1 million–includes nearly 4 million square feet of rentable space over 58 “non-core holdings” in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Virginia. It marks the completion of what Brandywine called a “multi-year portfolio repositioning strategy” totaling $1.1 billion.

“The 2015 and early 2016 dispositions provide significant liquidity and results in a portfolio much more focused on urban and town center properties,” said Gerard Sweeney, president and CEO of Brandywine realty Trust, in the statement. “In addition, these transactions significantly increase our financial capacity, reduce debt and provide ample liquidity for our development pipeline.”

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