Developer Presents Plans for 24-Unit Apartment in West Philly

The propposed apartment is set to take the place of the former building at 4536 Spruce, which burned down in February 2011. Photo via Google Street View

The former building at 4536 Spruce, which burned down in February 2011.
Photo via Google Street View

During a meeting with the Spruce Hill Community Association zoning committee yesterday, developers behind a proposed 24-unit apartment building presented their plan, which is set to accommodate low-income residents, “particularly veterans” and replace the burned down building at 4536 Spruce, according to Mike Lyons at West Philly Local:

The Mission First Housing Group‘s building would include 24 one- and two-bedroom rental apartments aimed at people with a household income of $36,000 a year or less and is contingent on state funding. Mission First hopes to improve its chances for funding by going through the zoning process, which will require variances for building height, erecting a multi-family structure and not providing parking.

Lyons adds that the project would also offer both an indoor compactor and bike storage. Parking was not proposed.

Affordable housing plan at 46th and Spruce back in front of Spruce Hill zoning committee [West Philly Local]

Brand New Queen Lane Apartments Will Have Wednesday Groundbreaking

The demolished Queen Lane Apartments building via Google Street View.

The demolished Queen Lane Apartments building via Google Street View.

The Philadelphia Housing Authority has announced that it will break ground on the new Queen Lane Apartments development in Germantown on December 17th.

Expected to reach completion before this time next year, the project will consist of 55 apartment units with “a mix of low-rise flats, walkups, and townhouses.”

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Morning Headlines: 4601 Market Closer to Being New Police Headquarters

Photo credit: Laura Kicey

Photo credit: Laura Kicey

The Planning Commission approved a zoning change for 4601 Market earlier this week, which means the former Provident Mutual Life Insurance Building is closer to becoming the Philadelphia Public Safety Services campus.

PlanPhilly’s Matt Golas reports that breathing new life into the structure, which will eventually be the new headquarters of the Philadelphia Police Department, medical examiner’s office and city morgue, has “long been supported by the local preservation community” and that adaptively reusing the project is part of the city’s larger plan to revitalize neighborhoods:

Fulfilling the Philadelphia City Planning Commission’s 2035 Plan goals, the campus will also employ stormwater management practices, enhance public space, and have easy access to SEPTA’s Market-Frankford EL 46th Street Station.

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Loft Apartments Planned For Shuttered West Philly High School Might Include Small School

Photo via Google Street View

Photo via Google Street View

The former West Philadelphia High School will, if the purchase goes on without a hitch, live its second life as a mixed-use loft apartments building, a plan developer Strong Place Partners has had in the works for a few years now. Tomorrow, however, the School District will hear a proposal to include a charter school in a designated section of the building.

West Philly Local‘s Mike Lyons reports that Strong Place has agreed to lease “as much as 90,000 square feet” to the Philadelphia Music and Dance Charter School if the District approves the school’s application and if the community supports it.

Some locals had previously expressed their dislike for the planned lofts, which they believed would not address community needs and potentially spark up gentrification issues, according to NewsWorks.

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University City Gets a New Sandwich Joint

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Jake’s Sandwich Board is celebrating the grand opening of its second location in University City at 40th and Sansom Streets on December 1st, at 11 a.m. And if you’re one of the first 500 students to show up and show ID, you’ll be getting a mini bottle of Sriracha, oh yeah.

And if that’s not enough, on December 3, co-owners Gary Dorfman and Sean Stein will be hosting a Three For All – offering $3 sandwiches (any sandwich on the menu) for 3 hours (from 12 noon until 3 p.m.).

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Local 44 Wants to be Your Beer Gift Superstore

HolidayShoppingThe Bottle Shop at Local 44 is ready for all of your holiday shopping needs. The compendium to Local 44 is stocking a host of beer meets food products not to mention tons of beer as well.

Among the beer and food products available are several Victory Brewing related items including Victorious B.I.G. jerky, Crisp & Co. Pint Pickles and Punch Drunk hot sauce. There are also items like draft beer flavored jelly beans, beer soap and dog biscuits from spent brewing grain. The Local 44 team is also excited to have

There is also a pop-up freezer section offering Weckerly’s Cinnamon Toasted Oat on Chocolate Stout Brownies and pints of Porter Ice Cream with Chocolate Covered Brown Butter Short Bread.

Of course the bottle shop is also offering beer specials for the holidays. For one, all magnums of beer are $30 through the end of the year.

Holiday Shopping [Bottle Shop at Local 44]

Say Hello to Clarkville

Brendan Hartranft, Leigh Maida, Brendan Kelly will be opening Clarkville on Clark Park | Photo by Bryan Karl Lathrop

Brendan Hartranft, Leigh Maida, Brendan Kelly will be opening Clarkville on Clark Park | Photo by Bryan Karl Lathrop


Leigh Maida
Brendan Hartranft and Brendan Kelly alluded that the sale of Resurrection Ale House was related to plans they had for another project. Today it’s official, the team has signed a lease for the Best House Pizzeria (formerly Wurst House) at 4301 Baltimore Avenue, across from Clark Park, and that corner space is becoming Clarkville.

The menu will take advantage of the pizza oven and dough mixer that came with the space. So expect “pizza-like offerings” plus sides of vegetables and small plates that will keep vegan and vegetarian guests happy.

More on the beer and the opening »

Spot Burger Looks to Put Down Roots

spot-burger-cart-940.jpg-spot-burgersThe highly praised Spot Burger cart by Josh Kim has launched a $75,000 GoFundMe campaign in order to raise money for a brick-and-mortar location for the cart that normally hangs out around Drexel’s campus.

According to Kim, Spot Burger has “caught the attention of a retail developer, and we have been given the opportunity of a full restaurant in the Drexel Campus/Mantua area.”

Since coming on the scene in early 2012, Kim has received lots of praise including a 2014 Best of Philly award for Best Cheesesteak.

GoFundMe is a bit different than the better known Kickstarter, all GoFundMe campaigns have no deadlines or goal requirements and no penalties for missing your goal. So all donations are received by the person offering the fundraising campaign.

 

SPOT Gourmet Burgers, Steaks & Pork [Foobooz]

Morning Headlines: Renovation Project at 4601 Market Breaks Ground

Photo credit: Laura Kicey

Photo credit: Laura Kicey

The Provident Mutual Life Insurance Co. building at 46th and Market has seen a small number of tenants come and go, but for the most part it’s remained relatively vacant. Now, since making official requests earlier this year, the property is under city ownership and plans for its renovation have started.

West Philly Local reports the 87-year-old structure, which will be rehabbed so that it can house new occupants, had its groundbreaking ceremony yesterday. During this, Mayor Nutter announced the building would be referred to as “the Philadelphia Public Safety Services campus.” The site will house the new headquarters of the Philadelphia Police Department, the Medical Examiner’s Office, and the Department of Health public laboratories.

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Morning Headlines: Someone Finally Stands Up To Blackwell

Rendering of 4224 Baltimore Avenue. Photo credit: U3 Ventures.

Rendering of 4224 Baltimore Avenue.
Photo credit: U3 Ventures.

Will Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell respond now? Since April, Blackwell has ignored a zoning variance request from developers planning a mixed-use condo complex at 43rd and Baltimore. Even pleas from her constituents who loved the proposal have not moved her to speak. This morning, however, Inga Saffron called her out.

“But how long can she ignore this chunk of her constituency?” asks the Inquirer’s architecture critic after praising the “excellent design” of the Cecil Baker-crafted structure, which locals and the Planning Commission are excited about given Baltimore Avenue’s status as an growing commercial corridor. Developer U3 Ventures seeks a zoning change that would make the space’s current residential zoning to residential/commercial, thus helping the corridor grow.

Saffron says neighborhood reaction to Blackwell keeping mum is a perfect example of  a “quiet revolution” in the face of “councilmanic prerogative”, which is to say, the all-encompassing power council members have when it comes to land use. Or as she puts it:  “They alone determine what projects get built, where bike lanes are located, whether residents can nominate their neighborhoods for historic status, and much, much else.”

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