1911 Walnut to Be Mixed-Use, Mixed-Income Project

The Sansom Street elevation of the revised Southern Land tower proposed for 1911 Walnut. The Warwick Apartments, part of the revised development, are at the extreme left. | Renderings: Southern Land Company

Southern Land Company appeared before the City Planning Commission today with a revised version of its proposed apartment tower on the last piece of open land right on Rittenhouse Square.

Preservationists will be pleased with one of the two biggest revisions the company made to its proposal, and for those who’ve longed to live on Rittenhouse Square but simply don’t have the scratch, the second is a dream come true.

Plan Philly reports that at today’s Planning Commission meeting, the company presented a proposal that preserves both the Rittenhouse Coffee Shop and the Warwick Apartments, both of which had been slated to fall to the wrecking ball in earlier versions of the project. Both of those buildings will be rehabbed to provide affordable housing units, and the tower itself will contain at least eight more below-market-rate apartments. Read more »

Philly Ranked Fifth Most Walkable City in U.S. This Year

All of Center City’s neighborhoods, from the Avenue of the Arts on down, are “Walker’s Paradises,” contributing to the city’s continued ranking among the five most walkable cities in the U.S. | Photo by Jeff Fusco

A mere two-tenths of a point dropped Philadelphia from its perch as the nation’s fourth-most-walkable city in this year’s Walk Score rankings of American cities.

Miami traded places with Philadelphia to become the No. 4 most walkable city in the U.S. on this year’s list. But no one should lament this development, for what it means is merely that cities all across America continue to up their walkability game.

A news release from Walk Score parent Redfin noted that once again, all of the 10 most walkable cities had higher Walk Scores than they did last year, and of the top 50, only Omaha saw its Walk Score fall (by a mere 0.3 point). Philadelphia’s Walk Score of 79 was 0.7 points above its showing last year, but Miami posted an even stronger gain of one full point to 79.2, putting it in fourth place and Philly in fifth. Read more »

Jawdropper of the Week: A Reborn Classic in Rittenhouse for $3.69M

2012 Spruce St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | Photos: Drew Callaghan Photography via Kurfiss Sotheby’s International Realty

Wonder what opulence looked like in the mid-19th century?

Wonder no more, for the architect who restored this gorgeous 1860 brownstone on Spruce Street in Rittenhouse was (almost) totally faithful to the style of the era.

This home was lovingly restored a few years back, with all of the lavish original detailing brought back to a high polish and some 21st-century touches thrown in. Read more »

Jawdropper of the Week: Modern Luxury on Rittenhouse Square for $2.795M

130 S. 18th St., Unit 2702, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

Once upon a time I died and went to heaven … real estate heaven, that is.

Regardless, I imagine the two to be fairly similar—fun, fluffy and absolutely fabulous. And, while I’m still alive and well, I promise you my heart skipped a beat (or two!) when an uber-chic and indescribably elegant apartment in Rittenhouse Square caught my eye.

Situated in the heart of the City of Brotherly Love, the 2,209-square-foot unit responsible for my momentary loss of consciousness is a three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bathroom condominium apartment in the Robert A.M. Stern-designed 10 Rittenhouse Square tower overlooking Center City. Sounds great, but there’s more. Once past the foyer, you enter a living space accented by floor-to-ceiling windows, making the view worth the big bucks—2,795,000 big bucks to be exact. Read more »

Common Threads in This Year’s Rouse Award Residential Finalists

Even Folsom Powerhouse, the most residential of this year's Rouse Award finalists, incorporates mixed uses in the form of an updated take on the traditional corner store. | Photo: Postgreen Homes

Even Folsom Powerhouse, the most residential of this year’s Rouse Award finalists, incorporates mixed uses in the form of an updated take on the traditional corner store. | Photo: Postgreen Homes

The Urban Land Institute Philadelphia District Council announced the finalists for this year’s Willard G. “Bill” Rouse Awards for Excellence last week, and five of the 14 finalists fall into the residential category, at least in part.

And it’s that “at least in part” part that’s one of the most significant common threads connecting the five projects. The message these projects deliver is one that urbanists, developers and planners have all been hammering home in one way or another for more than a decade now: Single-use is out, multitasking is in. (Toll Brothers, please copy.)

Not even the most residential of the five projects is exclusively residential, and that project has many other features that make it a standout. Read more »

Who’s Building Philly: Alon Seltzer

One of Alon Seltzer's Rittenhouse Savoy studio makeovers. | Apartment photos: Brian Lauer

Alon Seltzer’s own Rittenhouse Savoy studio was one of two makeovers that wowed viewers during Zillow’s “Tiny House Week.” | Apartment photos: Brian Lauer

Before the “tiny house,” there was the Rittenhouse Square efficiency apartment.

These shoeboxes for urban cliff dwellers enabled singles and others whose desire for urban living exceeded their need for space to take advantage of all the city had to offer: parks, cafés, shopping, culture, you name it. When the city was your living room, why bother with one of your own?

That attribute makes these efficiencies and studios popular with a younger set even now. But there’s a hitch: Back in the 1950s, when most of the apartment buildings containing these units were built, they weren’t terribly efficient in the way they used their limited space. And their appearance had likewise become dated.

Enter Alon Seltzer with his repair kit. Read more »

Jawdropper of the Week: Live Like Royalty in Rittenhouse for $4.99M

2004 Delancey St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | Images via Century 21 Veterans

2004 Delancey St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | Images via Century 21 Veterans

It seems that futuristically modern homes are all the buzz lately. So, when we stumbled across this historically exquisite townhome in Rittenhouse Square, we were both refreshed by its rich beauty and taken aback by its enormous size.

Situated on a tree-lined block of the most desirable street in the neighbhorhood, the property boasts six bedrooms, five full bathrooms, two powder rooms, nine fireplaces, a solarium, a gymnasium, a library, an au pair or in-law suite, and a two-car garage, amongst other things. The foyer’s 15-foot ceilings highlight the home’s original woodwork. To your left is a formal front parlor followed by a dining room, which is currently being used as a family room. Read more »

What $500K Will Buy You in Rittenhouse

130 S. 18th St. Unit 606, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | TREND image via Coldwell Banker Preferred

130 S. 18th St. Unit 606, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | TREND image via Coldwell Banker Preferred

It’s no secret that Rittenhouse is one of Philadelphia’s most prestigious neighborhoods. So when we went searching for Rittenhouse properties currently on the market that fall somewhere near the $500,000 range, we weren’t exactly sure what we’d find. Would this budget be enough to live comfortably?

Here’s what we found: while there are several nice options in the neighborhood that are on budget, most of these options are small (and not necessarily suitable for growing families). However, if you don’t need much space to live happily and only plan to live with one or two other people, these options could work and do come with some nice amenities – not to mention their close proximity to just about anywhere in Center City.  We’ll let you be the judge, though. Take a look at what we found below. Read more »

Trinity Tuesday: A Rare Gem in Rittenhouse for $330K

403 S. 17th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19146 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

403 S. 17th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19146 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

If you have champagne taste on a beer-bottle budget, say hello to this completely modernized trinity in the ever-so-desirable neighborhood of Rittenhouse Square.

In traditional trinity fashion, this property rings in at a mere 700 square feet. However, what you get for that square footage is well worth it (if you can bear living modestly, that is).

The first level sports white marble floors, built-in shelving, and recessed lighting. Just off the main room is a tiny kitchen with white appliances, a stainless steel backsplash, and countertops. The second level can act as one of two things: an additional living space (office, den, entertainment area, etc.), or a second bedroom. This level is also home to the trinity’s only full bathroom. With stone-embellished walls and flooring, it’s definitely one of a kind. Read more »

Jawdropper of the Week: Opulence in Rittenhouse Square for $7.3M

1706 Rittenhouse Sq., Unit 2201, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

1706 Rittenhouse Sq., Unit 2201, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

We’ve talked about properties in the luxurious 1706 Rittenhouse building several times over the past few years (like here, or here, or… here), and the time has come to add another one to that list – because let’s face it, these units do not disappoint.

Head up to the 22nd floor (via your private elevator, of course), and enter right into the residence’s grand marble foyer with an aquarium wall. Just beyond the wall is a chic living room with spectacular views of the city. Oh, and the living room isn’t alone either – basically every other room in the unit has an outstanding floor-to-ceiling window view too, and if those views aren’t enough for you, just step out onto one of the two private balconies. Read more »

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