Renderings of proposed 9th and Wharton development
After telling you about last week’s zoning meeting regarding a proposed development at 9th and Wharton, many of you sounded off with your opinions in the comment section, especially with the issue of parking in mind.
Although there seem to be some neighborhood concerns regarding this proposal, we now have a look at some renderings for this potential development across from Pat’s King of Steaks at 9th and Wharton.
According to Philly Mag, developer Paul Mirabello says that the project won’t move forward without the support of the neighborhood. Since the beginning, Mirabello has been considering the concerns of neighbors and tweaking the plans to better fit the needs of those in the area.
The proposal for this development includes 18 residential units and ground-level retail. The building would be three floors along the Wharton side, but on the 9th Street side it would have four floors to match the height of the commercial property adjacent.
To move forward, the project still would need to receive the proper approval for the zoning to be changed from single-family to mixed-used.
What do you think of these renderings of the proposed development?
69 thoughts on “Renderings of proposed 9th and Wharton development”
Parking is already fubared in that area. I don’t think it can get much worse. So, I say add more residential units. People will make a decision on whether to live there based on if they are willing to contend with the parking. The price people are willing to pay will reflect that reality. It reflects that reality in any real estate decision.
I wish there were an option to “Like” comments cuz I’d have done that for this one! Well said!
@Lee — put your hands in the air and give me your money – Fatalism is a philosophical doctrine stressing the subjugation of all events or actions to fate. Fatalism generally refers to any of the following ideas: The view that we are powerless to do anything other than what we actually do.
You really need to stay out of the conversation if you don’t care!
That’s a fine looking building. Completely appropriate for the location, too. Would be a shame to see this get derailed over parking hysteria.
I like the idea of a mixed-use apartment building.
Anyone who hijacks this thread to complain about parking can move to the suburbs.
That said, Paul Mirabello is the guy who put in the wretched gray-stucco box at 9th and Greenwich. If there was any question, he’s proven that renderings mean absolutely nothing.
Hopefully this hole will get filled in with a mixed-use building, but I’m not sure Mirabello is the right developer for the job.
It’s ugly but it used to be uglier.
i dont like it either ! Looks industrial !
@ Aaron – I’m not Hijacking. I’m conversing. The quality of life in the area is at stake and can be easily fixed by some upfront design work. Why should we jump at the first proposal which is basically the developer’s “Hail Mary” rendering? They can redesign the structure. Why would that bother you?
Parking is an HUGE issue!!!
If you don’t think so, you must have a financial interest in the project succeeding as proposed
PS — and I’m not moving, as you suggest I should – all my 58 years in this area tells me what is right and what is wrong!
Maybe Pat can offer up his location to be bulldozed and turned into a parking garage. It’s a win-win!!!!
Looks great! better than the trashbag tumbleweed field.
Oh, I forgot to add, if you want a driveway/guaranteed parking, dont live in the city.
How about all of the long time residents who have preserved the neighborhood, making it attractive for developers, restaurant owners etc. remain in the area and this project moves to the suburbs?
It’s insane to create any new complex without considering parking problems or solutions. This area has become a hot tourist site and city planners have never addressed accommodating these tourists with restrooms and parking facilities.This proposed complex is just a pile on of bad density.
What’s insane is blocking development of a long-blighted parcel because you believe you have an entitlement to free parking that others do not.
The only parking solution is a drastic increase in parking permit cost, limited to one per household and capped based on the number of spots nearby.
I know that area well, it’s one of the worst in the city for multivariate households and cars that don’t move for weeks
@RailPhilly — your the insane person who offers no solutions or ideas to this debate.
The developer is making tons of money under this scenario and, you are saying, no one should ask for parking to also be included in the design???
Are you financially gaining from squeezing in 18 units where 2 used to exist? Are you?
If not, and there is no gain to be had by you, then get on board and support sustainable urban development ! Simple 🙂
He IS supporting sustainable urban development, by wanting to increase the cost of owning a car in a neighborhood where they are largely unnecessary. I’m a car owner (household of 4 people, 1 car) in the East Passyunk neighborhood, and I’ve been saying for years that it’s a crime how cheap it is to park in this city. YOU want to support sustainable urban development? Get off the dick of parking and individual automobiles and get with carsharing, bicycles, public transportation, and high density housing.
@SC – You do have a way with words. Beautiful!!
He is not supporting sustainable development without providing for parking. This city could not function without cars. People live in one place and drive 30 miles to work.
The Interstate Highway sytem took all options of not haveing a car away. We lost our factory jobs, our port jobs and other jobs that don’t need to located within the city because of the high wage tax. Comcast and other large companies locate here only because we give them tax breaks.
1.) car sharing — not widespread and no convenient
2.) bicycles — I think 20 miles in winter months is a bit much — don’t you think?
3.) public transportation – I like for a city job, but not outside city
4.) high density population – you got me — there’s nothing better than having 100,000 people where 50,000 onced lived elbow to elbow
5.) ” Get off the dick of parking” – Excellent advice!! — because last time I didn’t off the dick of parking, my dick got run over by a car. Hurt, yo!
You must be on his payroll or have something to gain financially to write this foolish posting. Admit who is paying you!! Tell all…
quality of life comes first. Thats in the up front design process. Also, City should incentivise off street parking.
Besides builders & developers & politicians — What does anyone who lives here have to gain by greater density without parking ?
Everyone who has been for this project on this blog has yet to explain why greater density without parking is such a good thing when it can be solve ?
@Paul: you must be new to Philly. There are over 500,000 LESS people in the city than there were 50 years ago. Perhaps you should consult a dictionary and look up “density”.
@PHIL – I agree.
You already need parking stickers on 11th and Federal — and it is moving down to ninth and Wharton if this is built. Many people on this blog have financial interests in development and don’t care about the quality of life in our area. They are getting paid, somehow, someway.You can spot their comments by the name calling — “lunatic”, “nuts”, ” no right to park in front of house”– makes you wonder what their motives are.
No one who lives in South Philly can logically be for higher density! This is a nice neighborhood because of the LACK of apartment and transient renters who come and go without a care who their neighbors are. It is a lovely structure but 18 apartments where 2 families once lived is a bit much!
Its hard for this developer to back away from $500,000 to $600,000 in yearly rental income — he needs to go increase the population density in his own neighborhood
Where are our elected representatives??
Permit parking solved any parking concerns on my block. There really is almost always an open spot. Why do people resist paying ten cents per day to solve their precious parking problem?
Permit parking really won’t do much good here since most of the saturation of parking spots comes from short term parking. People can and do park in totally illegal and ridiculous ways just long enough to get a cheese steak. Any legal 2 hour spots will be taken up and evacuated shortly.
I don’t know if the PPA gets free whiz or wit, but they aren’t reacting to obvious violations…
On the plus side, it’s why I can circle and find a spot in just about the time it takes to scarf down a steamed pile of “rib eye”…
For all the drama that would be involved in setting up permitted parking, I don’t think it would actually lead to easier parking for locals. If it happens, I’ll pay because I need a vehicle for my occupation, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it actually got harder to park.
If you don’t have permit parking, PPA generally stays away and it’s up to the cops to do enforcement, which they don’t. See how this works yet?
Right, which is why I think adding permitted parking will actually make the situation worse for residents. With PPA around the legal spots will be that much more prized. I expect regular screaming matches with PPA agents and less not more parking for us.
So you think the PPA need to get…… Tougher? HaHaHaHaHa
They’re the biggest scourge on our city… Never trust anyone who thinks the PPA needs to be MORE active than they already are.
No, not at all. I think the fact that they aren’t enforcing around the Pat’s and Geno’s makes it easier for me to find a real spot. TIny Tim seemed to think that permitted parking would help us, I think it’ll make things worse.
I get mad just seeing those uniforms…
A few points of order.
First, the developer proposing this project lives in the neighborhood. Therefore, he is very much putting his money where his mouth is by promoting greater density in his own backyard.
Second, a good number of row homes are already getting carved up into rental units to accommodate new residents. One of those who spoke out at the meeting last week owns a triplex down the street. How is he not responsible for contributing to the density that long-term residents like himself claim to oppose? If anything, we should be building more rental buildings so that homeowners can live in their row homes as they were intended to be used.
Third, the issue here really isn’t just parking; it’s the idea that the character of the neighborhood must be preserved at all costs. While this notion is well-intended, the truth is that all neighborhoods evolve and their character is redefined by new arrivals. Have you guys been up 9th Street lately? The southern half of the “Italian” Market has largely been revitalized by immigrants. Spaces that were derelict a decade ago now brim with life with bachata music playing through the windows. Those businesses didn’t “drive out” the old guard; they complemented it by filling a void for an underrepresented segment of the population. The idea that opposing higher density projects will preserve the character of the area is useless when that character is and has always been in flux.
We can argue whether the number of units proposed here is too many, or whether the corridor can sustain additional retail, but let’s not oppose projects out of the mistaken belief that the neighborhood can be frozen in time and that new residents can be made to adhere to the principles and carry on the traditions of those who came before them.
I agree that progress is going to happen and I welcome beautiful homes in our area ( 10Th & Cross St). But to change the character of the area by going from single family homes to multi family units is the issue. If they just wanted to build 2 large homes where 2 large home used to exit, that would be OK with everybody. But to build 18 units instead of 2 single family homes is the issue. We just can’t keep this up.
Why would anyone, without a financial interest in the success of this project, argue for an under-parked project like this one. Makes me wonder as to the motives behind to some of these blog comments.
I can only speak for myself, but there are a couple of reasons I support the project:
1. Increased vibrancy where a vacant lot once stood increases safety in the neighborhood. Not just on that single lot, but more residents means more foot traffic across several blocks surrounding this development.
2. I believe this part of the city is way too auto-focused, despite it being amazingly walkable with great transit. Higher density and parking difficulties push more people to go car-less. This then creates more support for walkability, transit and bike-ability.
3. Less vacant lots, and a diversity in architecture, building types and uses makes for a more well-rounded neighborhood with more choices for everyone. It raises desirability and property values.
I support parking exceptions (e.g. special permits) for those who have occupations that require parking or those who require an automobile for other reasons (e.g. health-related issues/disabilities). Resident-based permit parking on the street could cater to these scenarios while requiring a higher fee and less accommodations for those who just prefer to drive. Why not provide dedicated parking spots for these individuals/uses?
What we can’t keep up is not having enough rental properties. Fewer and fewer people my age can afford to buy single family homes, but we still need place to live. Yes, I am the transient renter. Would I love to put down roots? Absolutely; I love Philadelphia! But the reality is that I have student loan debt, and a short term contract position, and in a couple years I may have to move to a completely new city for a job.
In the the meantime, I do care about my neighbors, and know many of them by name. My boyfriend and I keep our place neat and tidy, investing our own time and money. We also care about keeping our neighborhood and block clean, reporting short dumping, and participating and block cleanups. Philadelphia’s culture of home ownership is great, but for many people my age, it’s no longer a reality that we can count on, and we need places to live, too.
I love everything you just said.
“They are getting paid, somehow, someway.You can spot their comments by the name calling — “lunatic”, “nuts”, ” no right to park in front of house”– makes you wonder what their motives are.”
You’re kidding right? Motives?? Its called logic! You live in the 4th largest city in the country, parking is a privilege not a right. Lucky for us the days of you old timers derailing progress in this city are slipping away.
5th largest city… Tied with Phoenix or something like that.
Paul , the renters will probably be all bike riders anyway , i just dont think the building is that nice looking .
@Marianne – You may be 100% right. The renters may be bikers today but you can’t depend on that being the case for the life of the development. The bigger mistake is not designing a well parked building at the very beginning.
When it comes to real estate development, now, at the design and planing stage , is the time to make everything work for the neighborhood. You need to voice your demands now and not be passive at this stage.
Let’s not be sheep!
The restroom issue is the problem of the businesses at that location, not the city. By not having indoor seating they exploit a loophole in the city law which means they don’t have to have bathrooms for their customers. And they still have enough clout that they get any attempt to close that loophole shot down.
Or to make it simple: tired of your stoop smelling like pee? Demand that Pat’s and Geno’s provide restrooms for their customers.
Ummm… Pat’s and Geno’s anchored this avenue while a lot of you were all still in some suburban grade school having recess after lunch and going to field hockey or lacrosse practice after school…
I’d like to see something besides a mostly blank brick wall for the first story of the Wharton street side. Maybe some planters?
Parking is really not that bad. I live across the street and while I may have to circle a bit, I can usually find a free spot within a block. I’d rather walk two blocks than look over and see a vacant lot full of litter, weeds, and late night cheese steak eaters relieving themselves.
Good point about the blank wall… why not some windows into whatever retail space is going there?
My understanding is that the neighbors on Wharton Street didn’t want commercial windows on Wharton.
Phil I disagree 1000 percent with most the new people moving in are actually fixing up there houses and making the passyunk square way better. Parking should be no issue we live in a major city get over it and move out. Ps I’ll buy your house and fix up
Hey Joe, My house is already fixed up and so is my home at the shore. In fact, I bought and owned about 17 houses in South Philly and rehabbed them from Bella Vista in the 80s to Pennsport and the Italian Market area. No need to be snarky or presumptuous. Parking should be no issue? When you graduate from a bike, you’ll need parking for that truck and carpenter tools.
The point is, if parking is a major concern for you (which is seems to be) relocate to a residence with dedicated parking (suburbs or elsewhere). To shut down a project that would otherwise clean up a now empty corner of our neighborhood, because you are concerned about parking your truck? Seriously?
in your real estate developer days, how many parking structures did you attempt to build?
I park my truck with no problem every single day. Just stop complaining and be thankful your property values keeping going up.
And thats the crux of it… “You original south philly people should just be glad we’re coming here! Shut up and let us get our way or else…!” Or else… What? Yas gonna leave?!? HaHaHa!!! I doubt it…
Us original so. Philly people are happy to see the homes being rehabbed so you can move into them , we bought and rehabbed our own homes because we like nice things , so as long as you are clean and take care of your property ,us “original so. Philly people ” welcome you ,smarty !
@ProvWitout – You need to stop commenting because either you are gaining financially from this under parked project or you really don’t or can’t comprehend what is going on.
Or you just are uneducated…..
Permit parking is far too cheap to alone be an effective barrier to unnecessary car ownership, we do not force car owners to follow alternate side of the street parking for street cleaning ( dirty and crazy). This creates a situation in which for very little money you can line the street with as many cars as you would like and you are under no responsibility to ever move them or contend with the fact you are unfairly taking spots beyond what could be considered a necessity. Clearly there are people who for various reasons need to own a car in the city, but there are many people who do not need one let alone multiple cars per family. This is one of the most walkable neighborhoods in the city , additionally there is literally a mothballed street car line running through here. Want the neighborhood to continue to improve increased transit , safer bicycle and walking routes are clearly whats working not figuring out how to jam more cars into the same amount of space.
The problem very clearly is not adding additional residents but rather current residents and the no strings attached parking they have grown so attached to. This neighborhood is booming because things like its walkable lifestyle and pedestrian plazas , nobody is moving here because of the oversized parking lot at ACME down the road. Continue to allow ” car interests ” to dictate shaping of the neighborhood goes against everything that is clearly defining the successes of the area.
As a new resident/home owner in the Passyunk Square neighborhood, I agree that the development would be a great improvement over an empty lot. I respect the long-time residents who made the neighborhood what it is today too. My wife and I are in our 30s/40s and we both located close to the BSL because we knew we didn’t really need a car in the neighborhood (and we don’t, nor will we ever). I know some professions/jobs require a vehicle and that owning one isn’t an option, so that’ there too.
On the other hand, parking permits here are a joke in terms of cost. If they were more expensive, it would help pay for more of our city services while discouraging those who own a vehicle when it’s not really a necessity. Regardless of your beliefs on the parking situation, discouraging high density projects (especially when they’ll cover a trash-soaked grass lot) or street cleaning because of “parking concerns” is a bit ridiculous. I don’t like when anyone says people should move the suburbs (or anywhere else), but there must a solution to this not so pressing issue. It seems to just be made into such a larger issue than it really is.
Agreed, it should be several hundred dollars more. Make people think about the need for multiple vehicles or a lightly used single vehicle. I see cars that don’t move for months and a house of 4 have 4 cars, its mind boggling.
One thing the developer could do is have x amount of units sign non parking agreements. I bet a lot of people looking at this location would be the type that don’t own cars anyway. Thats a decent compromise that benefits both sides.
I don’t know your life style but most people need a car.
Why not let the people with the money develop sustainable projects with parking? You have NOTHING to gain by squeezing more people and cars into old neighborhoods designed for the horse and buggy. Why is everyone so willing to let developers “off the hook”? They can do parking and still make a profit!
Also, making parking permits more expensive is not the answer because the money given to the city will never,never show up in the neighborhood as “services”.
I think most people think they need a car since this country is very autocentric.
Don’t get me wrong many many people do, i have lived both ways living in Philadelphia but having a car in a metro area has this weird sense of entitlement since there used to be easier parking 10, 20, 30 years ago…
Well things / cities change and maybe now since parking is more difficult, people should
re-evaluate the cost to benefit ratio of parking. I currently have a vehicle, I don’t expect an easy spot at certain times of days, thats the cost of driving here.
Let’s stop with the all or nothing hysteria over parking. Raising parking permit fees can’t hurt in curtailing unnecessary cars. If you need you car for your job or otherwise you’ll pay for a more expensive permit. And, seriously, it is not that hard to park people. You just have to look a little bit harder on occasion. That’s life. Nobody is being forced to move because they can’t park their car. It’s really about being lazy.
People all over the world live in dense neighborhoods like South Philly and survive just fine without cars. And yes, even when they have kids. American culture has been warped by taking something that’s really a privilege and turning into (what seems to be) a right by decades of poor policy that’s unsustainable. Driving is the most expensive form of transportation, bar none (well, maybe helicopter is more expensive). It costs the city of Philadelphia a mountain of money to provide space for “free parking” for everyone, most of which would be much better suited for other uses.
That doesn’t mean that I think there shouldn’t be some parking for those that need it or can afford it, but I’d rather have more friendly public spaces, less traffic/congestion/pollution, more tax dollars go toward public transit (including it going to more places in the metro for easier commutes to jobs in the burbs), etc. I’d also rather have more projects that promote walking.
At the end of the day, people should own cars if they want them and can afford them, but parking complaints shouldn’t stop new developments that are going to fill in spaces like a trashy grass lot.
I appreciate how you are making an effort to be understanding of both sides of this argument. And yes… Increasing the cost of permits in the Passyunk Square area would definitely help raise much needed funds and also make people think twice about having an overabundance of vehicles per household.
My only 2 main concerns are:
1-The two hours limit without permit parking ends before a lot of people get home.
2-Keeping the PPA goons and goonettes trolling the streets later leads to more of their other ticketing absurdity not related to the time limit and permit checking. So parking too close to this or too close to that and whatever else they feel like ticketing for is extended even longer because they are there longer…
I wish they could ONLY ticket for non permit time limit offenses… There are a lot of parking spots that have ALWAYS been parking spots before the PPA crept down here from Center City and became reality stars with their trashy A&E shows. Now you have a good deal of spots that have nothing wrong with them other than the PPA sign…
If a Police Officer thinks your car is parked to close to something or too far from something, thats a lot more legit than if some PPA quota enticed flunkee with a patronage job feels like ruining your day just because…
Hey Paul your coplaining is annoying. More people mean safer streets more businesses property values go up. It’s better for the whole neighborhood don’t u get. I have nothing to gain from any of these projects in our neighborhood . More projects like this will only be good for the area. Why don’t you get it stop thinking in the past
Yo Joecarpenter – I’m not complaining. I want a better neighborhood (dah)! More people doesn’t mean safer streets — where in the world did that bit of wisdom come from?. That is a new one. I guess you mean larger crime stats are spread over more & more people so crime per thousand goes down but the actual amount crime actually increases – ahhh, good logic!
Also, I’m thinking of the future not the past. I see a potential future problem and I’m not shutting up because of people like you who have literally nothing to gain by continually supporting high density projects in their own backyard. Then there are those who have a lot to gain financially and don’t live in our neighborhood and fight us , tooth and nail, for approvals. People like you give in too easy. You may as well shoot yourself in the foot, while your at it. Maybe your impressed by wealthy people exploiting the quaint life style they saw in Rocky. These apartment renters only care about their apartment — nobody or nothing else. Here today, gone tomorrow – no roots.
Do you want congestion when a developer can solve if by redesigning his project up front/day one? That is future planning!
We will survive high density, if we have to — but why should we let it just happen without trying alternative, sustainable designs.
Remember — Fools rush in where wise men fear to tread!
The issue really is the CHANGE in density at the site. It was meant for a few townhouses, not 18 units. Therein lies the compromise: Replace some of the retail with parking. This developer can’t have his cake and eat it too – retail AND residential rental income. 1137 Wharton is an excellent example of how some parking was integrated into the project to offset the density change. In fact, those rental units are very desirable because of the included parking. The developer got his way and his project was not opposed at ZBA.
I humbly suggest that we move away from the moral issues of car ownership pro/con, and simply suggest maybe 9 parking spaces? Some retail would be lost, but the zoning would probably go through. Better than a trash-strewn lot.
Ted – That is a good proposal on your part. I like it.
This is the type of solution that gets to the root of the problem instead of arguments all around the main issue – the name calling and rude remarks need to end.
I agree as well. Great proposal Ted.
Holy smokes! Someone who takes the issues and exercises some critical thinking and proposes a solution… Ted you must be more active on these pages. Don’t let the hostile name callers shout you down.
@ProvWitout — Great! You agree about parking!
You need to be consistent yourself and not make comments on both sides of the issue. I don’t know where you stand by some of your previous comments.
ATTENTION NIMBYs, READ THIS.
Cars don’t generate tax revenue for the city of Philadelphia, people do. If we are reducing the density of units and prioritizing car parking over people, we are directly reducing current and future revenue for our school system.
@IAN — The priority is your quality of life not maximization of revenue. The school systems ( both Catholic & Public) were dealt a death blow long ago when they allowed school vouchers. I wish I had vouchers when raising my 5 children. I paid pre-K to Grad schools – 95+/- years of tuitions — no loans. At this point, there is only charter schools that are and will thrive in the future.–
That article calling people who want to own cars foolish because cars don’t generate revenue for the city,- ridiculous! So, everyone needs to take the bus to Wildwood for vacation? Cars are here to stay and everyone will own one –fact. The article states “NIMBY ( Not In My Backyard ) mentality ignores… (more taxes, etc).. factors, especially when it comes to a use of urban space that takes an incredible amount of land for storage and returns almost nothing back into the public coffers: parking.” Geoff Kee Thompson is for the highest density he can get — no limits!! He may also want to build on the parking spaces. I’m all for filling the public coffers!!!! Isn’t everyone.
This city can’t manage money! That is why Harrisburg has such a say on city spending.
NIMBY = A better quality of life though quality design and land planning!
I don’t know if it exists in Philly (yet to research) but here is Wilmington Delaware’s 20 year real estate tax exemption for off street parking construction – a city far smaller
“There shall be a 20-year abatement of city real estate taxes, to the extent of 100 percent of the building assessment as established by the department of finance, for any aboveground or underground parking facility or structure, whether freestanding or incorporated into a larger structure, which may be used by the public for the parking of automobiles off the street and is constructed within the boundaries of the city between:..”
This is an incentive — carrot vs. stick
there used to be a law that all new construction had to have off st parking , that law no longer exists because people were not using their space but parking on the st. therefore taking up 2 spaces. as far as cars are concerned , my husband needs his for work and i use mine for work , can i take public transportation , yes , but i have errands after work so i need my car. i have family in Jersey that i visit , need a car, so… it should be law that developers of a project this large should provide parking for the new tenants. I should not be penalized because I need a car ,
Paul – where do you get your “this used to be 2 single family homes?”
Everything I’ve read says a church used to stand here and that explains the current zoning of the lot.
It would seem all comparable lots in the area are zoned for commercial and residential along 9th street heading north towards the heart of the Italian Market. And, all adjacent corners here on 9th and Wharton have commercial/retail with housing above…and, no parking.
Whether we look to the past or to the proposed future, all signs would look to this development being very expected on this parcel and should easily be corrected in the zoning process. It is a commercial corridor with housing above – that is what has happened on 9th street in South Philly for as long as we’ve all been around. Nothing is changing.
@Steve – I stand corrected as to what was there – MEA CULPA.
What should be there is less density and more parking , as well as, something nice to look at. What does anyone have to gain by more density and less parking?
It’s really simple to me.
I hear you Paul.
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