October 14, 2013 |
With the family business thriving nearly 75 years after its debut in South Philadelphia, the planned opening of a fifth Di Bruno Bros. store next Monday in the city's Washington Square West neighborhood might strike some as a "So what?" moment. It's anything but, say city economic-development professionals and business owners in the downtown pocket where Di Bruno's is bringing its high-end Italian foods market. "They have amazing brand recognition," said Ivy Olesh, vice president of marketing and business development at the quasi-public Philadelphia Industrial Development Corp.
November 25, 2013 |
The blocks of Market and Chestnut east of City Hall remain the gash and gaping hole in Center City's success. They are bleak pockets of squalor and neglect. Landlords in the Market East neighborhood - if you can call it a neighborhood - have sat speculatively on properties for decades, avoiding upkeep or improvement. These are the blocks that progress forgot, a costly, damaged, and troubling stretch of our city that inhibits not only tourism but investment, jobs, and revenue. Francis Strawbridge, the final chairman of Strawbridge & Clothier, told me "Market's on a down cycle.
February 5, 2014 |
OLD CITY Philadelphia building officials have ordered the developer renovating Old City's Shirt Corner buildings to demolish the early 19th-century row after engineers discovered wide cracks in the walls, indicating that the structures were on the verge of collapse. The order, issued Jan. 24 by the Department of Licenses and Inspections, means the city will lose an important group of buildings that once served as warehouses and offices for Philadelphia's port, and later became a quirky retail gateway to Old City.
December 9, 2013 |
A pair of developers are overhauling 48th and Brown Streets in the Mill Creek section of Philadelphia with two rental complexes that, when construction is completed, will total 120 units. When a venture of Abington-based B & T Home Builders Inc. acquired the 2-acre industrial plot at 800-820 N. 48th St. in 2007, the company heard from skeptics. "Everyone thought I was crazy," said Hillel Tsarfati, a B & T cofounder. Situated two blocks from the Lucien E. Blackwell Homes, alongside a mix of well-kept rowhouses and vacant properties, West Village at 800 N. 48th St. is the largest private residential development in Mill Creek in recent history.
February 1, 2014 |
Sitting in his office in Chicago, Neil Bluhm, SugarHouse Casino's chairman, was so disturbed by the financial predictions coming from this week's hearings on a second Philadelphia casino that he flew in Wednesday evening to speak to the state Gaming Control Board himself. "I felt I had to come down and tell them that if these numbers are right, they're going to have a mess on their hands," Bluhm said after Thursday's hearing. Bluhm, a Chicago real estate investor who entered the casino industry more than 15 years ago, was referring to the projections of how much gambling revenue SugarHouse would lose if a second casino opened in Center City or South Philadelphia.
February 13, 2014 |
Weekends for Joseph A. Gorman were not spent sleeping in, not 50 years ago. On Saturday mornings, "he wakes up, vocalizing," before heading off to sing at Gloucester City church weddings, his son Joseph A. Jr. said. Later on Saturdays, he is playing the piano and singing at Kenny's restaurant on Market Street in Camden. "On Sunday mornings, he plays for Mass" as the volunteer organist and choir director at St. Mary's Church in Gloucester City. "That was the routine," his son said.
August 21, 2013 |
A woman who lost her legs after being buried for nearly 13 hours in the Market Street building collapse filed a lawsuit Monday alleging widespread negligence in the catastrophic June 5 accident. Mariya Plekan, a 52-year-old immigrant from Ukraine, was shopping in the Salvation Army thrift shop at 22d and Market Streets when a wall being demolished in the building next door fell onto the store's roof. Plekan suffered devastating injuries "that led to the removal of her entire lower body," the suit says.
December 20, 2013 |
DO ME A FAVOR: After you finish this column, spend the day keeping track of how many homeless people you see. Look at the man huddled in the corner in the concourse between Suburban Station and City Hall. Look at the frail young man rocking back and forth on the cold pavement outside the Dunkin' Donuts on Market Street. Look at the woman with a toddler holding out a paper cup for spare change on Walnut. And then ask yourself: How is it that we, a civilized society with great minds and deep pockets, still have people living and dying on the streets?
December 10, 2013 |
PHILADELPHIA The developers who bought the Dow Chemical Co. Building on Independence Mall in October say they plan to spend $20 million on a renovation that will include a 110-space parking garage and a restaurant with outdoor seating. Three companies - Keystone Property Group of Bala Cynwyd, Mack-Cali Realty Corp., and parking lot developer Parkway Corp. - jointly bought the building at Sixth and Market Streets from Dow for $45 million. Dow will lease nearly 200,000 square feet there for its headquarters, Keystone president Bill Glazer said.
May 5, 2011 |
Market Street between 16th and 17th Streets will be closed between 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. today for a Philadelphia Soul Football practice session. Traffic will be allowed to cross Market Street at 16th and 17th streets, but police say motorists should expect backups and delays in the area.