New condos and houses being built @ 24th & South Streets

photo courtesy of PlanPhilly

Condominiums haven’t been popular the last few years because of the slow economy and reluctance of banks to issue new home loans.  But, the market may finally be turning around and a new condo development at 24th and South Streets is a sign of that.  The development is known as 2400 South, and it includes condos and townhouses on the site of an old parking garage and warehouses.

2400 South had been planned for several years.  It is being developed by locally based developer Toll Brothers, the largest luxury home builder in the United States.  Toll Brothers developed the large Naval Square development next door.  Naval Square consists of the condo-converted Naval Veterans Home, originally the location of the U.S. Naval Academy before it moved to Annapolis, Maryland in 1845, and hundreds of new housing units in the form of condos, townhouses, and stacked townhouses surrounding the historic hall.  Toll Bothers bought the parking garage, at 24th & Bainbridge Streets, and the one-storey warehouses, at 24th & South Streets, years ago after they started building Naval Square.  Their design for 2400 South changed several times over the years.  They first wanted to build a taller building, but then decided on a more low-rise building accompanied by the townhouses.

The more recent plans included a five-storey condo building, along 24th Street, and townhouses on the rest of the site.  Last year, the plan included parking on the first floor of the building and facing the backs of some of the townhouses along Bainbridge Street.  I attended two community meetings of the South of South Neighbors Association and the neighbors were not happy with those aspects of the project.  So, after listening to the neighbors and the City Planning Commission, Toll decided to modify the plan by putting several retail spaces on the first floor of the condo building and putting the front of the townhouses on Bainbridge facing the street, instead of facing an inner courtyard.

The most recent plan was approved by the Planning Commission and Zoning Board last December.  It includes the five-storey condominium building with 59 condos and parking underneath the building.  The design is a traditional Beaux Arts style, a more modern style than Naval Square.  There will be 2,300 square feet of retail space along two thirds of the front of the building, from the corner of 24th & Bainbridge to a little beyond the middle of the block.  The end of the building, at 24th & South, will have three condos at the street level.  Then, there will be Colonial-style stacked townhouses on South Street, Bainbridge Street, and a few imbetween those two rows of townhomes, for a total of 68 townhouse units.  There will be internal parking for the townhouses, as well as, yard space inside the development.  There will be no garages facing outside the development, but there will be entrances for cars on South Street and Bainbridge Street, just behind the condo building.

One reason why Toll decided to put the retail at 24th & Bainbridge is because a small condo building is about to be built across 24th Street.  That will, also, have retail spaces, which will bring a major concentration of stores and restaurants to this busy six-point intersection of 24th, Bainbridge, and Grays Ferry Avenue.  Just around the corner, on Grays Ferry, a new senior building has been built with a couple (potential) retail spaces, and a block down, from that block of Grays Ferry Avenue, is a newly renovated building which has apartments and new retail on the 2100 block of South Street.  These new developments are giving the Fitler Square and Graduate Hospital neighborhoods a much larger amount of much needed retail establishments.  As a former resident of both neighborhoods, I used to walk to that area (sometimes carrying heavy laundry baskets to and from the laundromat there on South Street), but I used to travel to other areas more often for most needs.  Now, that area around Grays Ferry Avenue and South Street, famous for the annual Odunde Festival based on the Yoruba New Year, will be the retail hub of Fitler Square and western Graduate Hospital (sometimes known as Schuylkill).

If you are thinking about buying or renting a home or investment property (townhouse, condo, or rental apartment) in this rapidly developing area, feel free to send me an email at gabriel@thecondoshops.com.  You can, also, check out my Facebook page, Gabriel G. Philly Realtor, or my twitter page, @GabrielGPhilaRE.  You should, also, check out the Condo Shop website, at www.thecondoshops.com, where you might see listings for this neighborhood (among many others) and check out our Condo Shop Facebook page, The Condo Shop, and our Condo Shop twitter page, @The_Condo_Shop.  And you can find out more about 2400 South with this link, here, to Toll Brothers’s 2400 South website and view my pictures of the site below.

Renderings of 2400 South Street, from the Planning Commission meeting in December (photo courtesy of PlanPhilly)

Parking garage and lot where warehouses used to be, looking from the west on South Street

Lot, at 24th and South, where one-storey warehouses used to be

Garage looms large at 24th and Bainbridge

Looking west on Bainbridge, showing garage on 24th, Naval Square, and the Penn Hospital complex in University City

Sign announcing 2400 South

Old garage, across the street on South, will be included in the expansion of a popular neighborhood private school

This lot, at 24th and Bainbridge, will have a small condo building with retail

Naval Square, at 24th and Grays Ferry Avenue; Greater St. Matthews Church, in the background, may be renovated into apartments soon

Looking down Grays Ferry Avenue, with Greater St. Matthew's Church on the right, and the Center City skyline in the distance

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4 Responses to New condos and houses being built @ 24th & South Streets

  1. Gil Gilbert says:

    Naval Square consists of the condo-converted Naval Veterans Home, originally the location of the U.S. Naval Academy before it moved to Annapolis, Maryland in 1845,

    What is your documentation for this information??????????????????

    • It’s common knowledge, but you can research Philadelphia history, the history of the Naval Academy, the history of the Schuylkill River, or check out Toll Brothers’ website. Biddle Hall, in the middle of the complex, was built in 1827 as the US Naval Academy. When the Academy moved to Annapolis in 1845, it was converted to a naval veterans retirement home until it closed in 1971. Toll Brothers bought the site in the 1980s, and started developing it about a decade ago.

  2. Roy says:

    We are planning to buy the townhouse recently built on the corner of 24th South Street (directly across from the Toll Brothers property). Do you think it is a good investment for us? We are hoping that by the time the entire construction is complete, the entire neighborhood will be up and coming. What do you think?

    • This neighborhood’s already “up and coming”, and the developments there now will likely make it an established upper income neighborhood. I think the home you bought is a great investment, because the new developments that I mention in the article and the expansion of the private Philadelphia School across South Street will just guarantee the popularity of the neighborhood by well-to-do residents and increase all the property values. Just be ready for a busy neighborhood, because there will be a lot of new retail soon on 24th Street and on Grays Ferry Avenue.

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