Please enjoy this week’s edition of Capstone Law’s Philadelphia Real Estate Trends:
- In addition to announcing plans to add approximately 2,000 jobs to its Philadelphia Navy Yard headquarters, Urban Outfitters entered into a lease for the former Waterloo Gardens in Devon. Urban plans to transform this 6.5-acre site into Devon’s first true downtown. This “lifestyle center” will include an upscale garden center, a boutique hotel, a speciality foods market, a spa, several restaurants, and many stores —featuring Anthropologie, of course. This proposed project supports the current trend of creating high density suburban developments catering to millennials.
- Philadelphia developers are still demanding public subsidies/assistance when constructing hotels in the city. Just this past summer, the $60 million dollar Home2Suites hotel, propelled by more than $10 million in public financing, opened its doors across the street from the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Fast forward to this week, when City Council President Darrell Clarke introduced a bill to provide the developers of the proposed W Hotel at 1441 Chestnut Street with more public incentives in addition to the millions in tax-payer subsidies the developers seek for the proposed project. Hotel developers contend that Philadelphia’s abnormally high construction costs necessitate public assistance to realize any economically viable hotel project in the city.
- Following up on my previous column, Philadelphia’s Zoning Board of Adjustment just granted final zoning approval to Rodin Square, a $140 million mixed-use project at the site of the Best Western Hotel on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, which will include a flagship Whole Foods, 9 stories of apartments, and additional retail space. The project’s developer expects to break ground in the first quarter of 2014 and expects the project to be complete in 2016.
Until next time, have a great week!