45-Unit + Retail Plan Approved in Northern Liberties

342 W. Girard Ave
342 W. Girard Ave

If you live near 4th and Girard in Northern Liberties, you’ve definitely walked by Trios and may have ordered a pizza from the establishment in the past. About 6 weeks ago while watching an Eagles game, we went to put in an order with Trios and our call wouldn’t go through. We knew there were development plans for the property and at that point assumed that Trios must have closed down in anticipation of the property becoming a construction site. A couple of days later, we walked by the Trios building and our thoughts were confirmed. Trios had closed down operations at the building they called home for more than 10 years at 4th and Girard. However, we later found out that Trios opened up a new location at 1308 W. Girard and is still offering delivery to the Northern Liberties area.

As much as we appreciated the long-operating business and their tasty pies, we always thought a tiny building and surface parking lot on such a prime corner was an underuse of the 8,218 square foot CMX-2 zoned parcel. It seems like the owners shared our feelings.

342 W. Girard Ave zoning map
342 W. Girard Ave. Zoning Map

Earlier this month, the Zoning Board of Adjustment (ZBA) approved the owner’s plan to build a 6-story, 45-unit building with ground floor commercial space, 9 surface car parking spots, and 30 bicycle spaces on the site. This is a less dense plan than the 50-unit proposal that the owner originally presented to the Northern Liberties neighborhood group.

No demolition or construction permits have been pulled to date, but we imagine that the owners want to move forward in the near future. They likely would not have cleared out the commercial space if their plans were not imminent.

We haven’t seen renderings for the project yet, but hope the curb cut is removed from the Girard Avenue side of the property and placed on 4th St. There have been countless times where we were riding a bike or walking along Girard Avenue and had to deal with drivers pulling into or out of the parking lot.

We think this mixed-use plan is much more appropriate than the 1,748 square foot building and surface parking lot that currently occupy the property. 45 homes for people right along the trolley line and a short walk to the Girard Avenue El Station seem like a much better use of this land. Hopefully, a quality retail business opens up on the ground floor.

How do you feel about this project? What kind of business would you like to see open in the new building?

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