Could a “Flip Tax” Put the Brakes on the New Boom?


Illustration by Gluekit (for sale sign: iStockphoto/Thinkstock; cone and building: Claudia Gavin)

Take a stroll along West Girard Avenue in Brewerytown and you’ll see a transformation under way. Since developer MM Partners began working in the area in 2001, it’s broken ground on a number of projects, started a street-cleaning program, and attracted businesses to the beleaguered corridor. It’s big-time stuff, but even with nearly $60 million more in investments planned over the next two years, founder David Waxman says MMP can’t do it all on its own: “Having smaller guys doing the one-off homes is a big help.” Read more »

Property’s Photo of the Week: Philadelphia Drone Edition

A video posted by Chris DeAntonio (@marinersax) on

Shout out to Chris DeAntonio (a.k.a. marinersax on Instagram) for posting this super dope drone clip a few weeks ago. It’s got us antsy for the start of Memorial Day weekend!

Anyone else plan on staying in the city? Don’t forget to take a bunch of #phillyscape pics! Now go, be safe, and have fun!!!

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Two Philly Parks Win National Grants Backed by Walt Disney Company

The seals at Glavin Park | Photo: Patty-Pat Kozlowski

The seals at Glavin Park | Photo: Patty-Pat Kozlowski

Expect to see some much-needed improvements at two Philadelphia city parks in the near future. Glavin Playground and Pennypack Environmental Center will each receive a $20,000 grant after being selected as the winners of the Parks Build Community campaign through the National Recreation and Park Association. According to a press release, the initiative helps to reviatlize and restore parks and park programs across the country and was sponsored by The Walt Disney Company, including Disney Citizenship, Disney|ABC Television Group and ESPN.

Kathleen Muller from Parks and Recreation explained that there were three city parks up for a public voting process on NRPA’s website, largely promoted through social media: Glavin Playground, Pennypack Environmental Center and Martin Luther King Recreation Center at 22nd and Cecil B. Moore. “The citizens are really the ones who took to social media and voted for the projects.” So much so, in fact, that Muller said Glavin was the top vote-getter in the entire nation. Pennypack had such a following that it became the national write-in winner. “We captured their attention nationally,” beamed Muller. Read more »

Spotted: Unit 2901 Available at the Dorchester at Rittenhouse Square

TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach-CC Rittenhouse Hotel

TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach-CC Rittenhouse Hotel

A glorious Memorial Day weekend is upon us, but here’s a mini house porn fix of the Philly variety for when you’re en route to the Shore or wandering from event to event right here in the city. (Full disclosure: We think dilettante chefs might appreciate this one best.)

Set atop one of the higher floors of the Dorchester at Rittenhouse Square, this two-bedroom, two-bathroom unit boasts a complete renovation: custom window treatments, designer lighting, floors made of Mirage red oak, and custom Lualdi Italy doors. The kitchen, especially, is a feature of pride, vaunting Italian cabintry by Poliform, Zodiac tops, and both a Gaggenau warming drawer and under-counter wine fridge. Joining these are a Miele dishwasher, Sub-Zero fridge, and a cook top, microwave, and wall oven all by Wolf.

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Navy Yard-Like Makeover Envisioned for Former Steel Mill Site in Claymont

Once a noisy, 425-acre industrial site in Claymont, Delaware (it’s less than an hour from Philly), the former Evraz Steel Mill property said goodbye to its last tenant right before the start of 2014. “It marked the end of nearly 100 years of steel manufacturing in Claymont,” wrote Delaware Online’s Xerces Wilson back in April. Now, the property has the potential for a new lease on life, one akin to Philadelphia’s relatively successful Navy Yard if things go accordingly.

The group with the plan? St. Louis-based Commercial Development Co., who bought the tract earlier this year. CDC has made a name for itself thanks to their work transforming “large, shuttered heavy manufacturing sites” into new usable spaces, reports Wilson.

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Farmhouse Friday: Kimberton Country Spread With Views of French Creek

Now that's a fireplace. | Images by TREND via

Now that’s a fireplace. | Images by TREND via BHHS Fox & Roach-Collegeville

Let’s head out to Chester County just west of Phoenixville for a moment to check in on a property that looks to be the quintessential farmhouse. The home dates back 269 years (!) and was later expanded to give it more space and a covered patio. We can imagine catching many a firefly on its 2.70-acres of land.

Don’t let the age fool you, it has all those much-needed modern amenities that you’ll need, including two-zone air conditioning, an in-ground pool in the yard and a workout room in the barn. Features like the two wood burning fireplaces, hardwood floors, exposed beams, farmhouse tub and dual-horse stalls in the barn call back to its workmanlike past. In other words: this place has kept it real after all these years. Read more »

Headlines: Philly Among the Top 10 Most Job-Accessible Cities By Walking

Photo credit: Paul Sableman via Flickr

Photo credit: Paul Sableman via Flickr

Did you walk to work today? If you live in Philadelphia proper and answered “no,” all we can say is buddy, you best start taking advantage of living in what researchers at the University of Minnesota’s Accessibility Observatory are citing as the eighth most job-accessible city for pedestrians. Check out the full report here.

Determining a particular city’s ranking were its average accessibility (because although WalkScore has dubbed Philadelphia the fourth most walkable city overall, it’s not all about walking trails and sidewalks) and the amount of jobs reachable within a ten-minute timespan. Cities went down in their ranking weight with increased work travel times.

You’ll note, as Sustainable Cities Collective points out, that the top 10 cities on the list (New York, San Fran, L.A., Chicago, Washington D.C., Seattle, Boston, Philly, San Jose, and Denver, in case you were wondering) have a blend of two major elements that pave the way for their easy home-to-work walking commute:

The cities that make up the top 10 all have a combination of employment density and fast, frequent transit service. “Employment density is a primary factor in whether an area is economically walkable or not, and employment densities are typically high in cities that employ heavy rail systems leading into a central core,” [Accessibility Observatory director Andrew] Owen says. “In this way, transit systems promote walkability and walking accessibility, without requiring a user to board a transit vehicle to experience the positive effects.

Emphasis ours. Now here’s a visual for yah:

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Head Scratcher Rankings: Forget Beverly Hills, Narberth Is the Place to Live

Downtown Narberth | Photo: Dan Groff/Facebook

Downtown Narberth | Photo: Don Groff

Ahhh, Narberth, we often find ourselves longing to bask in your wonderland of sunshine, streets lined with palm trees, (good) Eddie Murphy cop movies and Hillbillies shows, iconic shopping and bevy of stars living in mega-exclusive compounds. Wait, that’s Beverly Hills. Sorry, we often get the two mixed up. How is that possible, you ask? Well, Niche, a website that says its goal is to transform “the way people make big life decisions,” has ranked the Montgomery County locale as the tenth best suburb in the nation, ahead of places like Beverly Hills (12), Manhattan Beach, California (11) and even Lower Merion Township (25).  Are we proud of this? Yes, and Narberth Online’s Facebook page summed it up for pretty much everyone in the region with a simple, “In your face, Beverly Hills!” Read more »

Spotted in Spring Garden: Mixed-Use Building with Brewpub Nearing Completion


Rendering of 1720 Fairmount, future location of Bar Hygge

Exciting stuff,  you guys! Along with the expected onslaught of summer heat, we’ll be seeing the final touches on the upcoming 1720 Fairmount mixed-use project in Spring Garden / Fairmount begin to take place. According to developer Dan Greenberg of North Broad Living, the expected completion date is July 1st. (That’ll be here in the blink of an eye, you just watch.) Pretty swell news regarding a spot that used to be a drab vacant lot!

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You Have to Check Out This Neat, Solar-Paneled Home in Northern Liberties

TREND photos via Redfin

TREND photos via Redfin

Is it just us or is there something a tad maze-like about this home (at least by what we can tell from the photos, see gallery below)? It’s interesting because other than that quirk and its über neat details, it’s a fairly unassuming newer construction in Northern Liberties, tucked away on the cobblestoned corner of Reno and Orkney Streets.

Unique features include a glass wall segregating the dining room from the Joanne Hudson-designed kitchen, where there’s custom concrete countertops and dining island (seats four), appliances made by Miele, Liebherr, and Wolf, and Downsview cabinetry; and a split-level second floor with three bedrooms (one of which has a custom steel fireplace) and a walk-in laundry room. Birch hardwood floors are throughout and there’s a custom-crafted wood, steel, and glass central staircase.

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