Though it’s no secret that the former Greater St. Matthew Baptist Church is slated for residential conversion, Hidden City reports that developer Alon Barzilay has a name for his new project: Sanctuary Lofts. Designed by architect Peter Lazor, the development’s plans include 38 apartments for the former church and its rectory.
Though Barzilay wouldn’t comment to Hidden City about a timeline, there’s no question the conversion is moving forward. Former church members are pleased with the plans, which include a strong eye toward preservation.
Finding Sanctuary In A Converted Church [Hidden City]
Photo by Brad Maule
The beautiful seven-bedroom Chestnut Hill home that was once occupied by “the kindest man I ever knew” has been on the market since November 2012 despite multiple price cuts. Originally priced at $1,650,000, the house is currently listed at $1,350,000, with a $45,000 reduction in October.
Given how delighted everyone has been with the recent snowfall, it seems like a great idea to add new listings photos of the property in wintry weather. No question, it’s enchanting.
Original gallery below.
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Photo of the Bryn Mawr store from Isabella Sparrow Facebook page.
Ardmore’s outdoor Clover Market is a home decor mecca for enthusiasts of the vintage farmhouse/warehouse/industrial aesthetic. Want an old tin sign with rusty edges? An antique watering can that doubles as a planter? Some bowling pins with flaking paint? The Clover Market is the place to go.
Vendor Hillary O’Carroll has been so successful with that kind of merchandise at the Market, she’s now opened a store — the first Clover Market bricks-and-mortar spin-off in Lower Merion Township, according to the Main Line Times.
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Married real estate agents Andrea and Jonathan Straub made national headlines last summer when their Haverford neighbor accused them of putting dead animals on her property and knocking down her For Sale signs. The Straubs were also trying to sell their home, and allegedly didn’t like the competition.
Charges against Andrea, who was fired from her job, were dismissed. But today a Haverford judge found Jon Straub guilty of harassment and disorderly conduct — in particular, for knocking over signs and throwing a dead snake onto the other property. Jon Straub’s lawyer says they may appeal the decision. The judge has fined Straub $25.
Judge rules in Haverford real estate case, Straub found guilty on 2 citations [Main Line Times]
It should come as no surprise that the South Philadelphia home of a Philadelphia Zoo primate keeper and an environmental engineer would be replete in flora and fauna (living and taxidermied). And yet – and yet! – the rowhouse unfolds in room after room of delights.
Samantha Nestor (the primate keeper) and Andrew Haneiko (the environmental engineer) bought the home in 2005 and have been renovating ever since. We are as gaga for the animal-centric details in this house and the ways in which they sneak up on you as we are for the talented Laura Kicey‘s photos.
Sure, this looks like a standard chartreuse living room.
But, surprise! It is also a reptile house for rescues, home to the couple’s iguana, king snake and lizard.
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Camden’s Adventure Aquarium right across the river remains a spectacular attraction, despite the city’s other problems. Photo via aquarium website.
• Rolling Stone magazine says Camden, NJ, is apocalyptic in an article written by one of the country’s most respected writers, Matt Taibbi
. Victor Fiorillo breaks down the most tragic points
, including the fact that Camden’s own police chief says the crime there is “somewhere between Honduras and Somalia.” And then there’s the aquarium. [phillymag.com]
• Rumors abound
about whether the city did or did not, or wanted to or wanted not, to host WrestleMania this year. Allegations and officials statements are flying. It all has something to do with the event’s Fan Axxess component, which has particular facilities need — perhaps to accommodate the extra X. [philly.com]
• Best Headline of the Day, Without Even Reading the Article: SEPTA to improve user experience in Center City’s underground concourses
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Rendering of Temple University boathouse that never was. Via temple.edu
At first, the question was whether Temple University should renovate its decrepit old boathouse, which the crew team hadn’t occupied since 2008. Then the question was whether to build a new boathouse. Subsequently, another question was raised: Could the new boathouse be sited on Kelly Drive, under the Strawberry Mansion Bridge? Leading to another question: If so, how to hold Temple accountable for the parkland lost when the boathouse was built? The debate over each question was fierce, particularly the last one, which pitted conservationists and parkland advocates against players and enthusiasts of college athletics.
If we could add the hours of argument up, and then multiply by a factor of emotion, aggravation, passion and despair, the number would soar into the stratosphere — so many minutes gone, never to be gained again. And for what? The tragic reality is that Temple no longer has a crew team. The point is moot.
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If you complain about Center City trash now, then you probably didn’t live here 25 years ago, when, as Patrick Kerkstra evocatively writes, “Center City was awash in garbage: bulging Hefty bags, swirling pretzel wrappers, fetid dumpsters lurking in every alleyway.” The idea that some day there would be teal-clad men and women sweeping the streets and driving mini street cleaners would have been laughable, as would have Walnut Street comparisons to a suburban mall in King of Prussia. A lot has changed downtown in the last quarter-century-plus, and much of that is attributable to Paul Levy, the CEO of the Center City District. To sum it up:
With apologies to Ed Rendell, no Philadelphian is more responsible than Levy for transforming downtown from the hellhole of the 1980s to the archetype of intimate, walkable urbanity it’s become.
No apologies needed to Ed Rendell, actually. A mayor has a lot to do, and is theoretically responsible for the entirety of a city (something Rendell didn’t always cotton to). But Levy, well, he’s been the mayor of Center City, and if it weren’t for him, many argue, our downtown would still be a locus of crime, graffiti, and putrid odors.
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There is so much going on in his house, it is mind-boggling. Or, better said, eye-boggling. The house’s featured amenities — not all of which we’ve ever heard of or even understand — are staggering in number and extravagance:
- six-person sauna
- working phone booth
- sliding hardware store ladder
- 3-car garage with extra-tall steel door
- bidet and raised Jacuzzi
- theater with overhead projector and 9-foot screen
- marble-top wet bar
- 1895 Brunswick pool table
- calendar table
- cigar/party room
- pool w/cascading waterfall
- cabana with bathroom
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What are the best ways to warm up after a cold walk in the snow? There’s hot chocolate (spiked, if you like). There’s sitting by the fire. There’s a heated pool, or a sauna, or a gym area to get the blood flowing. Take a warm bath, perhaps. Whatever your pleasure, the houses below oblige.
1. This Medford, NJ, home is all about warmth: indoor heated pool, towel warmers, bath with a bidet and heated seat, and leather floors. Did we mention the heated seat?
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