Just Listed: Repurposed Garage in Germantown

A reconstruction kept pieces of this structure’s industrial past alive while turning it into a totally new, totally stunning modern residence.

house for sale repurposed germantown garage exterior front

This striking new residence in Germantown’s Penn-Knox section, at 56 W. Queen Lane, Philadelphia, PA 19144, has an industrial past. Can you spot the clues in this photo? | Photos: Dave Apple, Advanced Imaging Methods, via Compass

“Germantown,” a poster on an Internet discussion board I frequent recently said, “is like a box of chocolates.”

I couldn’t agree more with the poster’s allusion to a famous line from the movie Forrest Gump. You never know what you might find around the next corner. History here, poverty there, affluence in one corner and La Salle University barely in the other: Germantown may well be the most heterogeneous neighborhood in the city.

Get off the Chestnut Hill West line at Queen Lane station, walk west on Queen Lane toward Germantown Avenue, and in five blocks, you will find this all-new repurposed Germantown garage house for sale on the right, just a few steps shy of historic Grumblethorpe and across the street from equally historic Trinity Lutheran Church.

Even though it’s classed as new construction, the house designed by C2 Architecture actually recycles a former garage on this onetime mixed residential-commercial block. And in transforming it, C2 left reminders of and materials from its commercial past.

house for sale repurposed germantown garage main living area

Main living area

The open-plan main living area, which you enter via a covered front porch, incorporates beams and other hardware from the original garage, for instance.

house for sale repurposed germantown garage living room

Living room

As you can see from this photo, however, the beams and chains now serve a strictly decorative function. The large multi-light Kolbe windows, which are brand-new, also serve as a connection to this house’s past life.

house for sale repurposed germantown garage dining area and kitchen

Dining area and kitchen

The kitchen, on the other hand, is a totally modern space, outfitted with Basis Design cabinetry and stainless-steel appliances.

house for sale repurposed germantown garage staircase


Next to the kitchen, however, the staircase mixes old and new by using reclaimed pine slats from the building as framing.

first-floor bedroom

First-floor bedroom

The house’s three bedrooms include two that could be considered primary suites.

first-floor suite patio

First-floor suite patio

first-floor suite bathroom

First-floor suite patio

The one on the main floor, behind the kitchen and half bath, has a high ceiling, its own private patio in the back and a bathroom with a glass-framed shower.

top-floor bedroom

Top-floor bedroom

top-floor bathroom

Top-floor suite bathroom

top-floor deck

Top-floor suite deck

The one on the top floor has a high vaulted ceiling, its own private balcony in the back and a bathroom with dual vanities and a tub-shower combo.

front roof deck

Front roof deck

Between these two sits a third bedroom that could serve as a home office one flight up the stairs and a huge deck atop the living room one more flight up.

The section of Germantown that contains this house is known as Penn-Knox. It’s one of those more affluent pockets one finds scattered around the neighborhood, and the string of reconstructions that include this repurposed Germantown garage house for sale aim to attract a few more affluent residents.

unit block West Queen Lane

The unit block of West Queen Lane, showing this house and its neighbors; the two houses in the foreground were rebuilt and a new house built between these and 56 as part of this project.

Some of them live in the former moving and storage warehouse in the rear of this photo, which has been converted into apartments.

Since this house sits just steps from Germantown Avenue, it puts you within easy reach of numerous historic attractions and neighborhood favorites. Besides Grumplethorpe at the end of the block, it’s a short walk to Maker Artisan Pizza in one direction and Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee and Books in the other.

Across Church Lane from Uncle Bobbie’s, also facing Market Square, you will find the Germantown Historical Society, and just a little farther away on Maplewood Mall, another recent rebuild, you will find the Germantown Espresso Bar and an eclectic collection of independent shops and eateries.

All these things make this repurposed Germantown garage house for sale one of the more delicious treats in that box of chocolates.



BATHS: 2 full, 1 half


SALE PRICE: $625,000

OTHER STUFF: This house’s sale price increased by $30,000 0n Dec. 22nd, the day after it was listed for sale, after interest in the house proved strong enough to support an asking price reflecting its actual value.

56 W. Queen Lane, Philadelphia, PA 19144 [Jeff “City” Block | City Block Team | Compass]

Updated Jan. 13th, 11:00 a.m., to provide the correct reason for the price hike and properly credit the photographer.