Plans to Replace Garage with 207-Unit Hotel in Rittenhouse

Parking garage at 1620 Sansom St.

We recently updated our story about a Center City Wendy’s that is set to be demolished to note that a 111-unit apartment structure would rise in its place. San Francisco-based company Sonder will be leasing the building to create a hotel-apartment hybrid. Sonder tries to combine the best aspects of a hotel with the Airbnb experience. Think of a hotel room that has a full kitchen and other living areas. Or, an Airbnb run by a company, rather than an individual homeowner, that offers fresh towel and linens service.

It looks like a similar project may be replacing a parking garage just northeast of Rittenhouse Square. A recent Philadelphia Business Journal article noted that Sonder plans to open a 207-unit hotel at 1620 Sansom St. 1620 Sansom is an 18,816 square foot CMX-5 zoned parcel that currently holds a 68,960 parking garage structure with retail spaces on the ground floor. Federal Donuts along with two other restaurants, a nail salon, and a dry cleaning company currently operate out of the retail spaces.

No permits have been pulled for the demolition of the parking garage or for the construction of the hotel. However, the property’s CMX-5 zoning designation will allow for a tall tower to be built at the site by-right. We imagine that the owner will need to give their retail tenants advanced notice of any impending closure of the building. This project is likely a long ways away. But, the Philadelphia Business Journal notes that Sonder has already signed a lease for the property. So, the writing is on the wall.

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