Thursday, October 15, 2015

Gigantic Mixed-Use Complex Coming to Fairmount Avenue

A company named Broad Street Holdings is planning to construct a supermarket, two parking levels, two residential towers, and 27 residential row homes at 1300 Fairmount Avenue, a large development site directly behind the Divine Lorraine Hotel in North Philadelphia. New York developer RAL Companies & Affiliates is designing the 860,000 square foot project which will be located just a block away from the Broad Street Line’s Fairmount station.

Plans for the massive development call for construction of a large supermarket, with an attendant parking garage that will front on Ridge Avenue, while a belt of row houses will line the block bounded by 13th Street, Melon, Park, and Wallace Streets.

Finally, at the corner of 13th Street and Fairmount Avenue, two midsize residential structures would be erected: a 15-story mid-rise residential building facing Fairmount Avenue, and an 18-story apartment tower, about the same height as the Divine Lorraine.

A short part of Melon Street–between Ridge and Park Avenues–would also be erased in favor of the supermarket. The market will be a welcome addition to the neighborhood as two large new apartment buildings are just two blocks away.

It is difficult to attempt large-scale projects on North Broad Street. The street calls for higher densities than what is being built in the surrounding neighborhoods.

Blumenfeld Development, which owns the Divine Lorraine and Metropolitan Opera House, developed 600 North Broad and Lofts 640, and is currently working on Mural Lofts in the former Thaddeus Stevens Public School, has been going at a relatively slow pace in large part for this reason.

Broad Street Holdings, based at 275 Seventh Avenue in New York City, bought the property from the City just prior to the beginning of 2014 for one dollar, a fraction of a percent of the parcel’s $6.3 million assessed value.

The developer is now seeking $15 million in state funding for this project.