In the post-Covid environment, developers in cities across the country are looking for ways to adaptively reuse urban office buildings as work from home has become more prevalent and companies have shrunk their office footprints. Although Philadelphia’s office real estate market is fairing better than other major cities such as San Francisco and Chicago, non Class A product is still feeling the brunt of the post-Covid pain. While new and Class A buildings are attracting interest from office tenants, older, more dated product is having trouble leasing up. So, it’s no surprise that property owners are seeking to convert these buildings into alternative uses or to sell the properties to other parties that plans on doing just that.
Last month, it was reported that MM Partners acquired the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia’s former office building at 2100 Arch Street for $12 million with an eye toward residential conversion. At the time, we didn’t have many details about what was planned for the roughly 120,000 square foot, 8-story building. However, thanks to zoning permits issued today, we now have information to share.
Plans call for commercial space on the ground floor and 120 residential units within the remainder of the structure. The zoning permit mentions that there are no plans to alter the building footprint or height. So, it seems like all work will be completed within the existing building envelope.
The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia moved its headquarters to Two Commerce Square last summer and the building has been sitting vacant ever since.
We’re extremely happy to see plans in place to re-activate this property and are thrilled that MM Partners was able to figure out a way to convert the building into a residential use. Due to office buildings’ unusually deep footprints, residential conversion is sometimes impossible due to a lack of natural light penetration into internal spaces. So, it’s great to hear that 2100 Arch was salvageable and will be reused. We know that local businesses, such as Cherry Street Tavern around the corner, are likely happy to hear that they’ll have a bunch of new neighbors in the coming years as well.
How do you feel about this project? Are you happy to hear the building will be reused? What kind of business would you like to see open in the commercial space?
Kyle is a commercial real estate agent at Rittenhouse Realty Advisors, a homeowner, and a real estate investor in Philadelphia. Kyle uses his extensive Philadelphia real estate market knowledge to help his clients buy and sell multifamily investment properties, development opportunities, and industrial sites.
Email Kyle@RittenhouseRealty.com if you are looking to buy or sell a property