If you read our articles often, you know that our favorite type of developments to see happen in Philadelphia are adaptive reuse projects. We love to see the historic streetscape of Philadelphia preserved and for new life to be breathed into blighted old buildings.
Just last week, we told you about plans to convert a historic church in Grays Ferry into 37 apartments. Well, just to the north of that property, at 25th and Oakford along the border of Grays Ferry and Point Breeze, there’s an adaptive reuse project that is much further along in the development process.
Back in 2016, developers purchased a nearly 44,000 square foot former clothing manufacturing factory at 2501 West Oakford Street for $1.075 million. The development team had their eyes set on a residential mixed-use adaptive reuse project, but the property was zoned for industrial use (I-2). So, they pursued a variance, which they were granted in 2018.
Plans called for a 5th floor addition to the property with 54 residential units on floors one through five, artist studios in the basement, and 36 bicycle stalls. Construction permits that were issued after the variance mention a commercial space, which could be referring to the artist studios.
We went by the site last week and it looks like the project is nearing completion. The brick has been repointed, new industrial-style windows have been added to the building, rust-adorned metal panels run vertically across sections of the former factory, and light fixtures have been added across the facade. We must say the building is looking fantastic. It even looks like a new concrete sidewalk was recently poured and that the walkway may be opened back up to pedestrians soon.
We’re happy to see a blighted yet stately old building given a new lease on life. We look forward to seeing how the building’s new residents energize the area and hope that we see more adaptive reuse projects planned in the future in Grays Ferry.
How do you feel about this project? Are you happy to see this building saved? How do you think the conversion turned out?
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