Please enjoy this week’s edition of Capstone Law’s Philadelphia Real Estate Trends:
- Exciting developments continue occurring around Drexel University’s campus in University City. In the next several weeks Drexel University, Amtrak, Brandywine Realty Trust, and other University City area institutions will select a developer to build a large project over the railroad tracks at 30th Street Station. These tracks have created a barrier between University City and Center City that has stifled nearby development for decades. If successful, this project could truly connect Center City and University City and spur new projects on both sides of the river. Further, it has the potential to transform the grimy Market Street section of Center City west of 20th Street currently home to surface parking garages and dilapidated buildings.
- MRP Residential and Principal Real Estate Investors recently acquired most of the Avenue of the Arts Building at Broad and Chestnut Streets in Center City. The new owners plan to repurpose the historic 17-story building — currently home to Art Institute students — into a 220-unit luxury apartment complex by early 2016. For those of you who love chain restaurants have no fear… the developers will retain the Olive Garden and the Capital Grille as their ground floor retail tenants.
- It is back to the drawing board for Brickstone Realty Corp., the developer of a proposed 35-story mixed-use building behind the iconic Lit Brothers Building on Market East. In its attempt to not diminish the beauty of the Lit Brothers Building with their new project, the developers earned the ire of the Philadelphia Historical Commission’s architectural committee. The committee requested that Brickstone design something bolder than the “inappropriately bland” current design. Brickstone, who agreed to follow the committee’s suggestions, intends for the project to enliven East Market Street with 342 apartments, 5 floors of office space,and ground floor retail.