Is Blatstein Planning a Residential and Retail Complex at Former Foxwoods Site?

A marketing brochure has 650 residential units, a new Wawa and Aldi, and even more retail coming to the vacant lot at Columbus Boulevard and Tasker Street.

1401-99 South Columbus Boulevard | Google Maps

1401-99 South Columbus Boulevard | Google Maps

A new mixed-use complex on the Delaware River would bring apartments, townhouses, park space, and retail–including a new Wawa and an Aldi–to the mix of strip malls and big box stores on Columbus Boulevard in Pennsport. That’s according to a brochure from MSC Retail, which shows the expansive 16-acre parcel would essentially be divided into four distinct areas.

Bart Blatstein, who originally assembled the site some 20 years ago, purchased the property once again in 2014 for $13 million after plans for a Foxwoods Casino at 1401 South Columbus Boulevard failed to get off the ground.

A large retail complex would front Columbus Boulevard, which the brochure shows plans for a proposed Wawa at Tasker Street and an Aldi supermarket, located near a newly created drive aisle that looks to be an extension of Dickinson Street, the latter would get a new traffic light and extend to the river.

Blatstein couldn’t be reached for comment, but a person close to project said the plan is to be completed it in two phases: the retail portion opening in early 2017, and the residential part would follow at some point.

MSC Retail is marketing the retail portion of the project and the site plan shows the parcel would hold a total of 75,000-square-feet of retail, including a bank pad site, over multiple buildings and separated by a few surface parking lots.

A center drive aisle and path would run through the middle of the site and lead to a grouping of 10 residential buildings. This residential area, the first of its kind south of the Residences at Dockside near South Street, would feature a mix of around 600 apartments and for-sale townhouses, creating some semblance of a street grid while providing access to the river.

A park area, in the form of an extended riverfront trail, would separate the complex from the river and span the parcel from Reed Street in the north to Tasker Street in the south.

Finally, townhouses would be located on a restored pier that juts into the Delaware River. In total, 435 apartments, 90 “stacked townhouse units,” 91 townhouses and 54 pier townhouses are planned for the site, according to the brochure. This site is set between two popular riverfront parks–Washington Avenue Pier and Pier 68.

The plot in Pennsport isn’t the only riverfront play Blatstein has cooking in Philadelphia. In Fishtown, the developer has partnered with Joe Volpe, of Cescaphe Event Group, to propose a large adaptive reuse project at Delaware Station, a defunct power station adjacent to Penn Treaty Park. Early plans include two private event spaces, two restaurants, hotel suites for event guests and public access to the river.