$1 Billion Virtua Hospital Plan Approved But Still Far From Done Deal


Virtua Health unveiled a $1 billion, 20-year plan to build a medical care campus in South Jersey. The health system has plans to construct a nine-story acute-care hospital, ambulatory surgical center, medical offices, parking garages, rehab facility, helipad, residential hospice, assisted-living centers, and even a helipad.

The plan won a unanimous 8-0 approval by the Land Development and Zoning Board in Westampton Township in Burlington County — but it’s still far from a done deal. Read more »

First Look: Five Below’s Massive New Flagship on Chestnut Street

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The outside of the Five Below flagship location on Chestnut Street between 15th and 16th Streets.

By the end of 2015, Five Below will have 436 locations all over the country — but perhaps none will showcase the brand like the one opening soon on Chestnut Street between 15th and 16th Streets in Center City. Not only is it the largest Five Below of all, but it’s also the Philadelphia-based company’s flagship location.

Built at the site of the old Arcadia Theater (constructed in 1915) the store has exposed brick, original crown moldings and high ceilings. Now it’s got an escalator, a lighted Five Below logo in the ceiling and plenty of colorful signage. By its grand opening date of Sept. 10, it’ll be filled with makeup, yoga mats, candy, cell phone cases and all the other wacky stuff it sells for $5-or-under. Read more »

Daughter of Legendary Radio Exec Says This Guy Has Taken Over Her Dad’s Home

James Gadsden standing in front of 2400 Bryn Mawr Avenue.

James Gadsden standing in front of 2400 Bryn Mawr Avenue. Photo | Facebook.

Wynnefield resident Mannwell Glenn was walking his dog down a leafy, generally quiet neighborhood street earlier this week when he noticed something odd: Two men milling about 2400 Bryn Mawr Avenue, the property of the late Kernie Anderson, a veritable giant in the urban radio market who died in December.

Their presence stood out to Glenn, because this section of Wynnefield is a very tight-knit, secure community (Mayor Nutter lives literally around the corner) and as far as the neighbors were aware, no one had access to the house other than Anderson’s daughter and sole heir, Shama Anderson, who still kept tabs on the home and made occasional visits from Harrisburg, where she had relocated. Generally speaking, the house had been vacant since shortly after Anderson’s death, and so the new activity did not go unnoticed.

So, as any good neighbor would do, Glenn started asking questions. Read more »

University City Science Center Plans to Swell to 4M Square Feet

Courtesy of University City Science Center.

Courtesy of University City Science Center.

The University City Science Center has plans to virtually double in size and create a behemoth with 4 million square feet of office, laboratory, residential and retail space.

Currently, the Science Center has 17 buildings on 17 acres. The new project will add 14 acres to the organization’s footprint — but it won’t happen overnight. It’s a 10-year project in coordination with Wexford Science + Technology, a realty company that has worked with the Science Center in the past. Read more »

Why Philly’s Millennials Aren’t Buying Houses



I love Philly, but I’m not going to buy a house here — at least, not anytime soon.

Neither, it seems, are thousands of millennials who call the city home, according to Sunday’s Inquirer. The reasons shouldn’t be surprising: They’re broke and skittish. But we ought to consider why it is they’re broke and skittish, and what it means for the future of the city that the next generation is hesitating to put down stakes here. Read more »

Bucks County Realtor Charged With $643K Fraud


“Anything In Life Worth Doing is Worth Overdoing & Moderation Is For Cowards…..” That’s what 49-year-old Dean Rossi wrote on his Facebook page less than a week before he was arrested, and if the federal indictment is true, no one would accuse him or his compatriots of acting with restraint.

The longtime realtor has allegedly been part of a conspiracy since 2006, colluding with several other real estate and insurance agents to bilk financial institutions out of thousands of dollars in loan money. Using various company names, prosecutors say Rossi would get bank loans to buy or refinance HUD homes based on the expectation that the money would be paid back at the time of the closings after prior mortgages and liens were satisfied.

Read more »

Philadelphia’s New Boom

A view of Center City from Penn Medicine’s Center for Advanced Cellular Therapeutics, taken on a February morning at sunrise. Photograph by Chris Sembrot

A view of Center City from Penn Medicine’s Center for Advanced Cellular Therapeutics, taken on a February morning at sunrise. Photograph by Chris Sembrot

Were you here in 1987? (Actually: Were you even born?) If you were, maybe you remember the thrill of One Liberty Place rising in the sky — an honest-to-God Philadelphia skyscraper at last, looking down on Billy Penn’s hat. How about the early ’60s, when Society Hill emerged from a hardscrabble neighborhood and Penn Center gave a new sleekness to downtown?

We find ourselves in one of those moments again — a period when our physical surroundings are changing quickly and drastically around us. What’s different this time is the breadth of the change, with new buildings and revitalized neighborhoods and inviting public spaces emerging all at once all across the city. We’re calling it the New Boom, and on the following pages we give you an inside look at the eight trends that are fundamentally reshaping Philadelphia — and a sneak preview of the revitalized city we’ll live in for the next half century.

Edited by Ashley Primis

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Letters From the (Real Estate) Trenches

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Illustration by Tim Durning

This past fall, after five years of renting in Fairmount, my husband and I finally decided to buy a home of our own in the neighborhood. Now, call me naive — maybe too many hours logged on HGTV? — but I honestly thought that our prequalified mortgage and 20 percent in our pockets meant we’d follow the classic script: We’d find a place, put in an offer, have our agent negotiate with the seller’s agent, and then — voilà! — be happy homeowners.

That isn’t how it went.

In fact, says realtor Karrie Gavin, that’s rarely how it goes these days in Philly. Gavin, a four-year agent with Elfant Wissahickon, prides herself on almost never losing a bidding war — and she’s been in a lot of bidding wars lately. A lot. “The inventory is very low right now, and there’s a high buyer demand,” she says. “I’m seeing a lot of things selling for above the asking price.” Penn’s Fels Institute of Government reports that home prices in fall of 2014 shot up all over the city; average days on market fell from 88 last winter to 67. The takeaway? Gird your loins, buyers: Competition is fierce, especially in hot spots like Fairmount, Grad Ho, Bella Vista, Queen Village, Passyunk Square, even Chestnut Hill and Narberth.

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What’s in Store for Philly in 2015


Clockwise from top left: Nordstrom Rack will falter; Bradley Cooper will get an Oscar nod; projects like East Market will fuel the millennial boom; and throwback cuisine will become a full-blown trend.

Restaurants and Bars

Predictions by Jason Sheehan and Art Etchells, editors of Foobooz

  • Culinary nostalgia will totally become a full-fledged trend. With Juniper Commons already bringing back the cuisine of the 1980s and Bud & Marilyn’s set to do the same for diner food, it looks like we’re all going to be eating a lot more raspberry vinaigrette and chocolate lava cake. The next big thing? Upscale TV dinners.

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