Gladwyne Commons With Church Conversion Is a Go

The interior of Gladwyne Methodist Church, soon to be converted to residential space.

The interior of Gladwyne Methodist Church, soon to be converted to residential space.

Main Line reBUILD has secured approval from Lower Merion Township—in a unanimous 12-0 vote—to move forward with the development of 310-324 Righters Mill Road. The hearing officers were impressed by the company’s ability to balance preservationist concerns with contemporary neighborhood priorities, including parking and the maintenance of the old structures. They even quoted John Keats when referring to reBUILD’s plans, and for a company specializing in adaptive reuse, you can’t do better than that.

The project includes the conversion of the circa-1842 Gladwyne Methodist Church, the church parsonage and the adjacent Odd Fellows Hall into rather luxurious residential space. To wit:

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Reduced: Gladwyne Gem Gets a Nearly $3M Price Cut

1333 Youngsford Rd, Gladwyne, PA

We wrote about this stone manor home, which once belonged to an underwater photography pioneer, when it was originally listed for a little over $8.4 million. The property has since undergone some price cuts, all of which add up to a significant reduction of $2,999,001.

The main house consists of formal living and dining rooms, wood-paneled library, solarium with French doors, which lead out to a stone terrace, and family room with fireplace and coffered ceiling. All five bedrooms have en-suite baths.

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New Project: Double Preservation Win in Gladwyne Means Church Conversion

The former United Methodist Church of Narberth is just one of a few church buildings slated for residential conversion. Photo credit: Laura Kicey

Over the years, Main Line reBuild, a development partnership consisting of developers Mac Brand, Tom Harvey, and Scott Brehman, has established itself as a stalwart of preservation, “flipping” neighborhood landmarks without compromising their historical integrity.

Among said conversion projects are the former United Methodist Church of Narberth (soon to be condo apartments with lower-level parking), the First Baptist Church of Ardmore (a plan still in the works, but which may include “elevator-capable condo units,” Philly.com reports), and now, the Gladwyne Methodist Church and Odd Fellows Hall.

Aiding the preservation and conversion of the two latter properties is a recent zoning code amendment, which the Main Line Times’ Cheryl Allison says allows for the residential conversion of these buildings with “provisions for historic preservation.”

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Spotted: A Mid-Century Modern Jewel Hidden in Gladwyne

featured 42 Crosby Brown Road, Gladwyne, PA, 19035

It’s only by accidentally turning down a secluded road that you would find this property so make sure to have the directions right if you decide to visit the open house this Sunday (more info, below). The home is situated on 3+ acres of verdant flora, which is gorgeous of course, but its the house itself that earns the title of jewel.

The home is designed with a lower level garden room and light-generous windows, something which the breakfast area benefits from thanks to a large picture window overlooking the grounds, stream, and surrounding trees. In the kitchen you’ll find Miele appliances, a double oven and built-in wine refrigerator. It’s also been updated with granite countertops, an island with pendant lighting, and European-style cabinetry. Read more »

On the Market: Eric Blumenfeld’s Gladwyne Manse

TREND photo via BHHS Fox & Roach Bryn Mawr

TREND photo via BHHS Fox & Roach Bryn Mawr

Eric Blumenfeld, owner of Philadelphia’s most well-known blighted gem, has put his Gladwyne home on the market. Blumenfeld, who long blamed funding issues for not getting his plans for the Divine Lorraine off the ground, has recently been in the news after striking a deal with New Jersey real estate lender Bill Procida. The investment will make the rehabilitation of the building possible (fingers crossed).

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Midday Headlines: Barker Mill Still Looking For A Buyer

Side view of 1400 Mills Creek Road via Google Street View.

Side view of 1400 Mills Creek Road via Google Street View.

In 2003, developer O’Neill Properties Group bought a two-building property at 1400 Mills Road called Barker Mill. Their intention was to transform the site into luxury condos, while planning a third building to complete the set. Sadly, as tends to be the case in renovation and revitalization projects, things did not going according to plan.

Cheryl Allison at the Main Line Times reports the development went up for auction in 2012 after a suffering economy and condo market hampered plans. The site, which is included in the the National Register of Historic Places Mill Creek Historic District, has been vacant for years and is now the second item on the Lower Merion Conservancy’s 2014 Preservation WatchList.

According to the Conservancy’s website, the mill served as a gun manufactory between 1807 and 1865, and made rifles used in the War of 1812. It later switched to producing carpet yarn after coming under the ownership of William Booth and Thomas Barker, a fact which Rutgers University professor Richard Demirjian cites as an example of the country’s early struggles toward “greater economic independence.”
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From Movie Theater to French Hammered Pewter Countertop, David Magerman’s Gladwyne House Does Not Disappoint

magerman.opener

$3.9 million is the asking price for Main Line Orthodox Jewish community leader David Magerman’s current residence at 1357 Hearthstone Lane in Gladwyne. The occasionally controversial philanthropist, restaurateur, and former hedge fund manager will soon move to his new home on Latches Lane in Merion, which is still under construction.

Some of Magerman’s soon-to-be new neighbors had grown accustomed to looking at the 75-year-old, 12,000-square-foot house that once stood on the 3.57 acre corner lot of Magerman’s new home. Magerman completely demolished that house to make room for his new one. Last year he told Property that the old house “was not very usable.”

The Hearthstone Lane house has five bedrooms that are “squeezed” into 9,629 of living space. That doesn’t include the 2,112 square foot very finished basement that’s home to a 13-seat movie theater. The entertainment center features oversized leather reclining chairs and is powered by a Kaleidescape server. In addition to the home theater, the house comes with five other flat screen TV’s, all 45” or larger.

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Philadelphia Metro Has 27 of 1,000 Richest U.S. Neighborhoods

vintage villanova ad

Image from a home builders catalog via Flickr user MidCentArc.

The Higley 1,000 — the list of America’s 1,000 wealthiest neighborhoods — has just been released by by geographer Stephen Higley. For those of us on the East Coast, there aren’t too many surprises: We can shrug our collective shoulders at the news that New York and Connecticut are full of moneyed white people. But it’s interesting to see the results for the Philadelphia metro area.

First, let’s listen to Higley talk about how tough it is to define “neighborhood”:

The concept of “neighborhood” in America is to say the least, amorphous. Realtors are notorious at “stretching” ill-defined neighborhood boundaries of wealthy places in the interest of generating higher prices through a halo effect.

Mapping companies vary from identifying virtually every sub-division (ADC Maps) to the grudging vagueness of a few well known neighborhoods (eg. Thomas Brothers Guides, Rand McNally). Google Maps, my main source for updating the Higley 1000 for 2010, has done an excellent job of adding neighborhoods in recent years. Still, there are many areas that are difficult to name as a “neighborhood”. I have used a variety of resources in trying to identify individual neighborhoods including extensive use of the internet.

(That’s cute — “extensive use of the internet.” Well, yes, we all use that thing from time to time.)

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It’s Back: Gladwyne’s Historic Water Wheel Home

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After a year off the market, this Gladwyne property has been relisted at $1.25 million. You may recognize it from its features in Bon Appetit and Main Line Today.

The home features formal spaces including a be-muraled parlor and a fireside library. The dining room is ringed by custom cabinetry by Van Heynecker, and similarly luxurious finishes complete the gourmet kitchen (which also features its own fireplace). The formal living room boasts another fireplace and set of built-ins. The family room offers heated tile flooring and a grand glass roof. Upstairs, the master suite includes two bathrooms of its own and – of course – its own fireplace. The third story bedroom includes a cedar closet, sauna and shower.

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