500+ Unit Development Moving Forward at Festival Pier Site?

Festival Pier Development Rendering
Aerial Rendering of the Festival Pier Development Site

Back in 2015, Jefferson Apartment Group and Haverford Properties were selected by the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation (DRWC) to develop the 11-acre Festival Pier site at Delaware Avenue and Spring Garden St. At the time, the development team stated that their plans called for roughly 550 residential units and 30,000 square feet of retail on the property.

Geotechnical site work and substructure repairs have proceeded over the last several years, and the development site has been shrunken to just under 9 acres. However, we have not gotten many updates about the development since 2015. When Festival Pier announced that it would be closing in early 2019, we had a feeling that some kind of news was on the horizon.

Festival Pier Development Site Plan
Festival Pier Development Site Plan

As the by-right project is due to appear before the Civic Design Review (CDR) on August 17th, we now have more details and renderings for the project. The development will consist of two buildings:

  • North Building: 76-foot-tall structure with 300,000 square feet of residential space mixed between townhouses and apartments, 21,800 square feet of commercial space, and 92 parking spots
  • South Building: 76-foot-tall structure with 302,000 square feet of residential space mixed between townhouses and apartments, 15,000 square feet of commercial space, and 104 parking spots

Although no residential unit counts are provided within the CDR presentation materials, we estimate that the number is at or above the 550-unit approximation from 2015.

Festival Pier Development Rendering
Festival Pier Development Rendering – Plaza

There will be a public plaza with ground floor retail frontage between the two buildings. This area will act as an extension of Spring Garden St. and as a gateway to the riverfront. The Delaware River Trail will be extended along the edge of the pier and will connect the plaza to a large landscaped park and play area on the south side of the property. This will be great public asset and will add to the work that the DRWC has been doing on the Delaware Riverfront.

Festival Pier Development Rendering
Festival Pier Development Rendering from Delaware Ave. and Spring Garden St.

The development team plans to use an assortment of facade materials including multiple colors of brick, metal siding, and cementitious panels. The rooftops, plaza, trail, and park will be landscaped with various trees, shrubs, and other plants. It is clear that a ton of thought and consideration has been given to this development.

We think this project looks fantastic and are excited to see it get built. This site is a 0.2 mile walk to the Spring Garden El Station. The transit-accessibility and proximity to all of the amenities in Northern Liberties and Fishtown should be a huge draw for future tenants in these buildings. We can’t imagine the waterfront views and open space will hurt either.

How do you feel about this project?

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