Morning Headlines: 146 New East Falls Apartments By Onion Flats Comes Closer to Reality

The City Planning Commission gave Ridge Flats, a proposed apartment building with ground-floor retail on Ridge Avenue, its imprimatur this week–meaning it’s one step farther along the path to actual construction. It would be, according to PlanPhilly, “the largest passive house certified building in the country,” and the point would be proven by residents’ displays of their energy use, which would be turned into a collaborative art project.

Next up along the road to fruition for these one- and two-bedroom apartments: height and parking variances to be considered by the Zoning Board at an Aug. 7 meeting. If the Zoning Board approves, Onion Flats hopes to start building in early 2014.

And in other local news…

It doesn’t have an ocean, but the Eakins Oval pop-up beach is beachy enough to draw folks from out of town for the day–just another draw to Philly’s new, improved Parkway. [Inquirer]
• Who would have thought that the Philadelphia Housing Authority auction would bring such high prices? It may not be Christie’s but given that it was selling vacant properties, $2 million isn’t so bad. [Eyes on the Street]
• Speaking of vacant, there is apparently so much vacant land in the Lower Northeast, says, “Some blocks have so few people it may make sense to use the land for farming.” Yes, let’s just return to a pre-industrial economy, no? At least in Philly, it’s clear this one isn’t working so well, so why not?