Friday, December 30, 2011

Another North Broad St Project

They just keep on coming.

I can't remember where I saw it, but I once read that the city was potentially going to name N Broad St the "Avenue of the Sciences"; what a great idea! To also call it "Avenue of the Arts" (like S Broad St) I think would not only be a wasted marketing opportunity, but it would dilute the brand for S Broad St.

Although there are places along N Broad St that would support the AOTA brand (i.e. PA Ballet, PAFA, etc.), there are also important institutions promoting science (i.e. Wagner Institute, Temple University, etc.).

The Uptown project should be great for N Broad St, but I personally believe the science route works better from a branding perspective.

Thoughts anyone?

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Another Philadelphia Photo Essay ... for 2011

For all of you regular readers, the first Philadelphia Photo Essay I posted (courtesy of B Love from has been been looked at by more viewers than anything else I've ever posted on

Welcome to another edition of Philadelphia Photo Essay (for all of 2011), courtesy of Philly's own

It's pretty awesome!

Are you looking to purchase a home in 2012?

If so, then you may want to check out this article on Trulia.

If you have purchased a home before and are now looking for an upgrade, this may already seem like "old news" to you. What I do know is that you will definitely find some useful information in this article because the real estate market is always changing which forces buyers to change their strategies as well.

If you have never purchased a home before, don't worry. There has never been a better time in history to buy a home (e.g. affordable prices, low mortgage rates, motivated sellers, etc). Just be prepared for 2012. Although it should also be a great year for buyers, it may potentially be the year where sellers start to get some of their negotiating power back.

If you are interested in buying a home at some point in the near future, but are unsure about how it all works, please don't hesitate to contact me and we'll set up a casual meeting over coffee (or a beer).

Friday, December 23, 2011

The transformation of City Hall ... in 2 years.

If you're a regular reader, you have probably seen a few tweets from me about CCD's big plans for City Hall in Philadelphia.

If not, you can learn more about the project here. After you've read that, you can also now learn that the project is not set to be completed for 27 months. The good news is, it really gives us something to look forward to in the years to come with much needed improvements to the areas around and underneath City Hall.

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Great idea for an urban mall

The Gallery in Center City, and Philadelphia's Mural Arts Program, are working together on a retail space that will benefit both parties. Plus, The Gallery is the perfect place for something like this. It's a hub for public transportation, it's close to Independence Mall, and it's in need of new tenants.

With the economy still pretty slow, it's these kinds of ideas that are helping local companies grow.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Philadelphia's planning culture is changing for the better

Philadelphia Building

To be honest, it's best if you just read this article, titled "Philadelphia's New Day," to learn more about how Philadelphia's new planning culture is bringing lots of positive changes to our great city.

All good stuff.

Friday, December 16, 2011

"Philly Live!" is now "Xfinity Live!"

Some of you may look at this as bad news now that the "Philly" name has been dropped from this project's moniker. Personally, I look at it as positive news for the project.

Why? Because now it has the financial backing of the US' largest cable company, Comcast. It also means that the entire project first imagined will now have a better chance of being built at some point, hotel and all.

As hard as it may be to visualize this project's significance, just know that it's a big deal. It creates a whole new, year-round retail environment for the South Philadelphia Sports Complex, it keeps momentum going for South Philadelphia's neighborhoods (adding much needed commercial real estate), it will feed off of the emerging Navy Yard, and it will add another tourist attraction for Philadelphia.

My guess is that with the stalled economy, Comcast was probably pulled in to really make "Xfinity" Live! all it could be; another Philadelphia venue that markets our local brands and businesses.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Future residential construction in Greater Philadelphia is up 25%

For real?

Yes, for real.

Not only that, but future non-residential construction is up 2% over last year. That's great news for our area. It means that developers/builders are foreseeing an uptick in demand for the near future. Otherwise, they would not be planning/building; trust me.

When demand goes up, prices go up. When prices go up, people start scrambling. Why not beat them to the punch?

Friday, December 9, 2011

Momentum continues in Brewerytown

If you are a regular PUL reader, you've probably seen a few posts/articles from me in the past about Brewerytown.

Well, here's another.

So, what makes an area a good place to buy/sell real estate? In my own professional opinion, there are a few things to look at first:

  • Demand - Is this an area that people want to move to? If so, why?
  • Appreciation - Is the supply/demand ratio high or low? Days on market (DOM) is a good indicator.
  • Residential/Commercial - Which one is moving the neighborhood forward, and why?
  • Location, location, location - Obviously.

This list could go on and on, but these are a few great things to look for when researching neighborhoods. Brewerytown is just starting to appear on Philadelphians' radars, so be on the lookout for more news from me.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Degrees = Jobs

Sounds pretty obvious, but it's true.

Educational attainment is a huge reason why some cities are thriving and some are not. Philadelphia is one such city that is thriving, but based on the amount of great schools we have, the city could be doing a little better.

According to reports, PA ranks 3rd in the US (behind only CA and NY) for having the most colleges/universities among all states. More specifically, the Greater Philadelphia region has over 40 four-year colleges/universities and that's not including two-year, technical, and graduate institutions. Needless to say, finding a suitable place to get educated is an easy task in Philly.

Read on to learn more about how Philadelphia can greatly increase jobs by getting more residents to graduate with a degree.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Study finds that "Cleaning & Greening" helps immensely

See for yourself.

The PHS (Pennsylvania Horticultural Society) and City of Philadelphia have found that this low-cost, high-value strategy in neighborhoods with excess amounts of vacant lots has really improved the overall quality of life among its residents.

This approach has also made neighborhoods safer. The study proves that cleaning and greening helps reduce violence, vandalism, and crime in general.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Another project planned for Avenue of the Arts

Carl Dranoff is at it again on AOTA. This one will be his third major project on this southern section of Broad St.

For all of you readers out there who are proponents of green/sustainable development, this project's main focus will be on Transit-Oriented Development (TOD). If you're unfamiliar with the term TOD, just know that it's becoming a popular buzzword in today's urban focused discussions.

If you've never heard of or seen Dranoff's other projects on Broad St, he built Symphony House and 777 South Broad. In my section of Philadelphia, Dranoff was responsible for Venice Lofts on Main St in Manayunk.

With a reputation for creating and/or rehabbing quality buildings with high-end finishes, this next one should serve as a solid anchor between Center City and South Philadelphia.