January 12, 2011
I am definitely a classical music lover. I subscribe to the Philadelphia Orchestra, the family concerts, and the chamber music series. However, I feel that the objections to the outdoor music at the Jamaican Jerk Hut by residents of Symphony House and other nearby buildings are very much out of line ("Disharmony on Avenue of the Arts," Friday). This business was operating for many years before the Symphony House was built. The complaints remind me of the people who purchase a new home near railroad tracks, or a busy shopping area, and then complain about the noise or the traffic.
September 15, 2014 |
THE COLORFUL images of Fats Waller and Bessie Smith painted on the facade of the Royal Theater reflect a past as a film and musical venue designed especially for Philadelphia's African-American community. The Royal, on South Street near 15th, was built in 1920 and is on the city's historic register. But the building has been vacant for more than 40 years, and nearby residents and business owners have become frustrated as it deteriorated into blight. Rather than becoming an anchor to spark development, they said, the Royal had become an anchor that weighed progress down.
February 8, 2014 |
Since making his inauspicious debut on South Broad Street in 2007 with the pink-hued, milk-bottle-shaped Symphony House, developer Carl Dranoff has gone on to do something that once seemed improbable: He has resurrected a big stretch of the battered commercial street as a residential boulevard. A canny developer, Dranoff seems to possess a sixth sense about where the real estate market will go next. He gets his urbanism mostly right, by packing the ground floors with generous commercial spaces and finding tenants to turn the lights on. But architecturally, his growing collection of condos and apartment houses has been a mixed bag. His follow-up to Symphony House, a mid-rise called 777, drips with Art Deco-inspired bling, while his latest, Southstar Lofts, is shaping up to be a rather staid white box. It's as if his South Broad is still trying to figure out what it wants to be when it grows up. Grand boulevard?
April 16, 2004 |
Carl E. Dranoff, best known for converting old buildings into modern apartments, is putting the finishing touches on plans for a new 31-story tower on South Broad Street. A formal announcement is expected today. The $92 million project, called Symphony House, will have 160 residential condominiums; a 350-seat venue for the Philadelphia Theatre Company, which plans to present plays, lectures and film festivals; an upscale ground-floor restaurant; and a 395-car garage. Dranoff's partners in the venture are musician and developer Kenny Gamble and Walter Lomax, a physician and health-care entrepreneur.
October 31, 2008 |
The riddle of the moment for Philadelphia's developers, economists, real estate brokers who target high-end property buyers, and just the mildly observant is this: How many millionaires will it take to fill all of the glitzy condominiums being built in Center City? The list of existing, under-construction and planned towers flaunting fancy names and eye-glazing price tags seems endless. There's the Murano, 10 Rittenhouse, Symphony House, Residences at Two Liberty, 1706 Rittenhouse and the Residences at the Ritz Carlton Philadelphia.
June 13, 2013 |
Philadelphia City Council gave preliminary approval Wednesday to a bill that would cap the 10-year tax abatement on new residential construction at $500,000 of value. The cap would go into effect in July 2015. The committee took a rare roll-call vote on the divisive issue, and the bill passed by 9-7, with Marian B. Tasco absent. The bill, sponsored by W. Wilson Goode Jr., could receive final approval on June 20. During testimony on the bill, Goode and Symphony House developer Carl Dranoff had several testy exchanges on the merits of the current tax abatement, which does not have a cap. The abatement has been credited with sparking a building boom - mostly in Center City and surrounding neighborhoods - but has been derided as an unnecessary tax credit to rich homeowners.
September 25, 2012 |
Developer Carl Dranoff came late to bicycling. Growing up in Philadelphia's Oxford Circle, no one rode bikes, he says. They walked to school and afterward hit the basketball courts for exercise. Dranoff didn't get on a bicycle until it became a matter of pride: His young daughter was learning to ride a two-wheeler. Why couldn't daddy? He was 35 at the time. Now 63, Dranoff still isn't exactly steady on a bicycle, even when he's pedaling one of the porker-class Dutch models that belong to his company's new bike-sharing program.
February 11, 2014
Distaff dissed As much as the Democratic Party allegedly values women's rights, it appears party leaders in South Jersey had only men in mind to replace Congressman Rob Andrews, who is resigning his seat ("Assessing Andrews," Feb. 5). After 26 years of male domination for that seat, why not select a woman? Arnold Einfal, Voorhees, firstname.lastname@example.org Job would wait Retiring Congressman Rob Andrews is the poster child for term limits ("Assessing Andrews," Feb. 5). The least effective legislator in the last 20 years - in terms of proposed bills that became law - Andrews must think his constituents are dolts to believe his claim that the job he is taking at a law firm would not be available to him were he to serve out his full term.
December 19, 2013 |
PHILADELPHIA The sketches were drawn, and the vision of a 47-story, $210 million hotel and condominium in Center City was in place. The developer, Carl Dranoff, said financing would be 95 percent private - the only exception being a block of money from the state. He was also counting on the city's 10-year abatement of property taxes. Then the author of a proposal to slash that abatement warned that he shouldn't count on it. "If they included abatements within their [financial]
September 5, 2014 |
Armed with evidence of increasing demand for new and larger high-rise condominiums in Center City, Carl Dranoff has shifted gears on plans for his One Riverside development at 25th and Locust Streets. Instead of 147 luxury rental apartments, the 22-story, $100 million-plus building will have 88 condos, including two penthouses, that he said will be priced at $700,000 to $4 million. Groundbreaking for One Riverside is scheduled early next year, "depending on permit issuance, which is hard to predict," said Marianne Harris, Dranoff Properties' sales and marketing director.