Renovation of the Albert J. Reach baseball factory, in Fishtown, is a home run for the neighborhood

rendering of renovated albert j. reach baseball factory as apartmentsThe long vacant Albert J. Reach baseball factory is currently an eyesore in the heart of the Fishtown neighborhood.  It stands next to the upscale Memphis Flats condominiums, at Palmer and Tulip Streets, and just a couple hundred feet from the age-old Palmer Burial Ground, where generations of working class Fishtown residents are buried.  The approximately one hundred year old building used to really manufacture baseballs for sporting goods maker Albert J. Reach, and then was used as a warehouse over the years.  Now, Domani Developers is planning to renovate the former factory into modern, upscale apartments.  The building is located close to Palmer Park, at Palmer Street and Frankford Avenue, the Piazza at Schmidt’s, and the Berks Street El Station.  This is another development in the center of Fishtown that is changing the neighborhood quite a bit.

The renovated building, designed by Cecil Baker Architects, will have 30 mostly one-bedroom apartments priced at about $1,000 per month and less, well below similar sized apartments in Center City.  A small fifth floor addition and rooftop patio will be built, as well.  There will be no parking, a fact that generated some opposition among the neighbors, but the project received support from the Fishtown Neighbors Association and the Planning Commission and Zoning Board of Adjustment, which had to grant several variances.  Domani Developers is hoping to finish construction by next summer.

This is hardly the only large renovation in Fishtown. Several years ago, the renovation of the Memphis Flats condos signified a renaissance for Fishtown, which had been home to several long vacant industrial eyesores.  Also, Neumann Hospital, at Frankford Avenue and Palmer Street, had become vacant, but it has since been renovated into senior apartments.  Domani is, also, about to renovate a vacant industrial building at 1421 Columbia Avenue into apartments, with a gym for the general public, around the corner from the Reach baseball factory.  All this development is increasing the population of Fishtown and creating demand for the growing, trendy business district along Frankford Avenue.  On the other side of the El along Front Street, in South Kensington, a lot of new development is occurring, including Oxford Mills at Front and Oxford Streets, an apartment complex with discounted apartment units for teachers, Soko Lofts apartments at Second and Thompson Streets, and at Germantown Avenue and Thompson Street yet another large apartment development is planned.  All this development is changing this once industrial area of the city, where Fishtown; South Kensington; and Northern Liberties meet, into a trendy and more upscale area dominated by artists and creative companies.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home or investment property in this quickly developing neighborhood, or any other neighborhood in the city, please contact me at Gabriel.gottlieb@lnf.com or check out my Long & Foster agent portal, here, or learn more about our Long & Foster Center City office, here.  You can, also, look at my Facebook realtor page, Gabriel G. Philly Realtor, or my twitter page, @GabrielGPhilaRE.  And you can learn more about Domani Developers on their website, here, and view my pictures of the Reach baseball factory and the neighborhood, below.

Rendering of the renovated Albert J. Reach baseball factory as apartments

Rendering of the renovated Albert J. Reach baseball factory as apartments

Albert J. Reach baseball factory as it is today

Albert J. Reach baseball factory as it is today

Albert J. Reach baseball factory seen from Palmer Street

Albert J. Reach baseball factory seen from Palmer Street

Looking down Tulip Street shows Memphis Flats next door and modern townhouses across the street

Looking down Tulip Street shows Memphis Flats next door and modern townhouses across the street

Memphis Flats and parking lot next door to Albert J. Reach baseball factory

Memphis Flats and parking lot next door to Albert J. Reach baseball factory

Modern townhouses across Tulip Street from Albert J. Reach baseball factory

Modern townhouses across Tulip Street from Albert J. Reach baseball factory

Albert J. Reach baseball factory, from Tulip Street, shows 1421 Columbia Avenue visible in the background

Albert J. Reach baseball factory, from Tulip Street, shows 1421 Columbia Avenue visible in the background

Albert J. Reach baseball factory and the former Neumann Hospital, now the Marie Lederer Senior Housing Complex, on Palmer Street

Albert J. Reach baseball factory and the former Neumann Hospital, now the Marie Lederer Senior Housing Complex, on Palmer Street

Houses across Palmer Street from Albert J. Reach baseball factory

Houses across Palmer Street from Albert J. Reach baseball factory

Memphis Flats from Memphis Street

Memphis Flats from Memphis Street

Albert J. Reach baseball factory from Memphis Street

Albert J. Reach baseball factory from Memphis Street

Looking down Palmer Street from intersection with Memphis Street

Looking down Palmer Street from intersection with Memphis Street

Palmer Burial Ground in the middle of Fishtown

Palmer Burial Ground in the middle of Fishtown

1421 Columbia Avenue will be renovated into apartments and a gym

1421 Columbia Avenue will be renovated into apartments and a gym

Fishtown banner

Fishtown banner

Frankford Avenue

Frankford Avenue

Former Neumann Hospital, at Frankford Avenue and Palmer Street, is now the Marie Lederer Senior Housing Complex

Former Neumann Hospital, at Frankford Avenue and Palmer Street, is now the Marie Lederer Senior Housing Complex

Palmer Park at Frankford Avenue and Palmer Street

Palmer Park at Frankford Avenue and Palmer Street

Market/Frankford El over Front Street

Market/Frankford El over Front Street

Oxford Mills, under construction, at Front and Oxford Streets

Oxford Mills, under construction, at Front and Oxford Streets

Kensington High School for the Creative and Performing Arts on Front Street

Kensington High School for the Creative and Performing Arts on Front Street

About gabrielcgottlieb

I am a real estate agent at Long & Foster Real Estate Center City and someone who likes to write about development and urban planning in the City of Philadelphia. Contact me at Gabriel.gottlieb@LNF.com if you are interested in buying or selling a home or investment property in Philadelphia.
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