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What's Happening in:  Newbold 

Developer buys old theater near 17th and Snyder, plans ‘game-changer’

John Longacre, the developer behind the ReNewbold development at 16th and Mifflin, has bought a former theater on Snyder Avenue, promising it will “lead a charge for revitalization”near 17th Street.

snyderLongacre says his LPMG company is still conceptualizing plans for the development planned for 1721-31 Snyder Ave., which he estimated to be about 12,000 to 15,000 square feet.

Longacre opened South Philly Tap Room 11 years ago partially to lure potential new residents who might be interested in his developments in the area. He also owns American Sardine Bar and the Brew portion of the Brew/Ultimo shop at 15th and Mifflin.

“I’ve been sitting on the property for a little bit because I don’t want to rush in,” said Longacre, who closed on it in July. “I want it to be something that is a game-changer. It takes time to do it right.”

snyder-2

A look at the side of the building

The building was most recently a theater called Venice Plaza, which was known for hosting the play “Tony and Tina’s Wedding” for years until the early 2000s. Longacre wouldn’t specify what he’s thinking of doing with the building, but he insisted he would reuse it to do something “very significant.”

“We fought to get it,” said Longacre, who also owns American Sardine Bar. “It could have just been turned into 15 houses.”

“It’s absolutely going to change that corridor forever.”

 

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17 Responses to Developer buys old theater near 17th and Snyder, plans ‘game-changer’

  1. AnthonyG November 24, 2014 at 9:21 am #

    Should be very interesting to see what he does with such a big place. Too bad he can’t be “lured” over to the east side of Snyder Ave. and help clean up that dump.

    • ProvWitout December 2, 2014 at 4:26 am #

      So you think the east side of Snyder is hurting more than the west side of Snyder from lack of development..? You are the one who is all gung-ho about uninspiring additions such as piss beer distributors and non-descript cheap food takeout joints…

      And now those places you were so enthusiastic about are open. And guess what? There is graffiti on the lovely piss yellow wall that the owner/tenants seem to not care about. There is an old big screen TV with its guts spilled out on the sidewalk that someone must have stripped for copper sitting in front of that ugly graffiti wall littering the sidewalk. If you were anything else but a slob of a business owner, wouldn’t you have removed that in some way shape or form? Wouldn’t you be painting over the graffiti with that ugly piss yellow paint you love so much? Wouldn’t you have a care for how bad this makes your business and your neighborhood look?

      All this was predictable! And it was predicted! But when we raised concerns. Bullies like yourself shouted us down as NIMBY people holding the neighborhood back. Is it too much to want to hold out for a better quality business? A place where the owners will be embarassed that their business is an eye sore and actually do something about it? We painted over graffiti on that building for years and swept the trash that would accumulate.. AND WE DON’T EVEN OWN THE PLACE. You ignore these facts and think its the neighbors making the neighborhood bad. But its the poor array of businesses keeping it this way.

      I hope the neighbors around this theatre get a better deal than we did. I hope whoever develops this theatre/catering hall has a care for added value and does not just rush any old idea into this space just to pay the bills…

      But mostly. I hope they don’t rush some uninspired slop into this space because of some loud mouth bullies from EPX who aren’t even a part of this neighborhood.

  2. enneirda November 24, 2014 at 11:41 am #

    Can’t wait! Bring it, Longacre!!

  3. Derek Kerfoot November 24, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    This article reminds me to respectfully suggest changing the tag line for this web site to “publishing press releases for developers”. Is there any real news? Is all development good?

    • Albert Stumm November 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm #

      Thanks for the feedback. Just to clarify, though, we’re not saying it’s good, just that something is planned. You don’t think it’s newsworthy that something could be coming to a large building that’s been vacant for years?

      • c'mon November 24, 2014 at 3:40 pm #

        These are the most exciting pieces!!

      • Wrdr November 26, 2014 at 9:45 pm #

        Re Kerfoot’s comment: Wish I could upvote this several times…

        Re Stumm:
        “Oh but it’s so newsworthy” is about as legitimate as the folks who publicize Intelligent Design propaganda for “balance”.

        Property acquisition, ownership, development, and marketing is basically politics + business activism. Almost all of the interesting and newsworthy parts happen around the edges and btween the lines. If you’re simply repeating one businessman’s marketing and investment pitch, you’re kinda not adding much and maybe helping to obfuscate. Or at least not adding remotely what you could. How about some context? I’m sure given your position you’re privy to info about how this deal came through, who else was gunning, various other possibilities for the land, info about the seller, various responses from the community, the perception within the developer community…

        But maybe that would veer perilously close to actual reporting…

        (For the record I’m a million percent (cuz, math) in favor of “revitalization”, but when we don’t focus on how and why it happens we lose our communities to shit like Sugarhouse.)

      • Word maker November 26, 2014 at 10:05 pm #

        Re Kerfoot’s comment: Wish I could upvote this several times…

        Re Stumm:
        “Oh but it’s so newsworthy” is about as legitimate as the folks who publicize Intelligent Design propaganda for “balance”.

        Property acquisition, ownership, development, and marketing is basically politics + business activism. Almost all of the interesting and newsworthy parts happen around the edges and btween the lines. If you’re simply repeating one businessman’s marketing and investment pitch, you’re kinda not adding much and maybe helping to obfuscate. Or at least not adding remotely what you could. How about some context? I’m sure given your position you’re privy to info about how this deal came through, who else was gunning, various other possibilities for the land, info about the seller, various responses from the community, the perception within the developer community…

        But maybe that would veer perilously close to actual reporting…

        (For the record I’m a million percent (cuz, math) in favor of “revitalization”, but when we don’t focus on how and why it happens we lose our communities to shit like Sugarhouse.)

        • Christian Matozzo November 28, 2014 at 12:02 am #

          I’m one to agree with this here…this piece just doesn’t really say anything aside from the fact that John Longacre bought it, and he literally said nothing in detail about how he’s going to use the property. What’s he going to build there?

          • Albert Stumm November 28, 2014 at 8:13 am #

            That’s the point. He wouldn’t tell me. This process will probably take well over a year, with several community meetings and details will emerge. I don’t see the point waiting until I have the entire story before telling an interesting part of it.

            • Kernel December 1, 2014 at 8:32 am #

              I completely agree with you Albert. I found this article interesting. Please do not listen to these negative comments.

              • DaveFame December 2, 2014 at 2:03 pm #

                I agree that this is worth writing about. I had no idea that building existed and now a developer with a proven track record is going to do something exciting with it. That’s news.

            • ProvWitout December 2, 2014 at 4:06 am #

              I agree with Albert for reporting the info he actually has confirmed. This way, the readership has it brought to their attention. Perhaps one of the many readers is in position to influence what goes on for the better.. Maybe getting a discourse going about it from the readership and the people in the neighborhood will positively influence the end result…

              Nay sayers… Do you think Albert won’t run the latest details of the news as they develop or as he unearths them? People need to chillax..

        • Albert Stumm November 28, 2014 at 8:21 am #

          What context? The building is a dump and was for sale. He bought it to make money off it. That’s the how and why, so there’s not much around the edges to speak of. The only information I was privy to was a tip from a source that it was sold and then public records showing the sale. No one else was gunning. That’s the point. It’s been empty and crumbling for decades. The community will get its chance to respond once he actually proposes something.

      • Sam Jenkins November 26, 2014 at 11:42 pm #

        Just an FYI, I’ve got lots of comments but this sites moderators are quite zealous…

  4. PG November 25, 2014 at 8:59 am #

    Actually, the Venice Plaza was a catering hall. Many a couple had their wedding reception there in the 60s-80s. Later, in the 90s it was used for the Tony/Tina production.

    I wish Longacre success.

  5. linda December 9, 2014 at 12:38 pm #

    I lived up that block all my life til I got married. My mom still there. I am so happy here something good will be coming. Use to love to watch all the ppl when had weddings there n then when they used it for the show Tony n Tina ‘ s wedding.

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