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Massive Globe Dye Works in Frankford hits market for $7.5M

The former yarn factory is now an artistic community

An old yarn-dyeing factory-turned-artistic haven in the Frankford section of Philadelphia has hit the market to the tune of $7.5 million.

Globe Dye Works, a collection of 10 industrial buildings that houses tenants like Rival Bros. Coffee and Philadelphia Wooden Boat Factory, is looking for a new owner willing to take the reigns from a group of investors who have spent the past seven years transforming the massive 145,000-square-foot property into a workplace for artists and artisans.

"It’s clearly been a labor of love for the current owner group, which consists of seven investors," says listing agent Christopher Plant. "It really is in many senses, the perfect picture of what that intersection between art and commerce and architecture is supposed to look like."

Built between 1867 and 1895, Globe Dye was originally a major hub for the dyeing and bleaching industry. It closed its doors in 2005, until two years later when Globe Development Group LP bought the property for $675,000, according to public records.

It’s been a huge undertaking, and Plant says there’s still some 40,000-plus square feet of space still available for development. Currently, 68,000-square-feet is tenant occupied, and the developers have been working to renovate some of the available space into a live-work situation.

So why are they selling? "Several of the owners have the possibility of other options," says Plant, who adds that there are already a handful of investors who have expressed interest.

But the hope is that whoever buys the property will continue with the current setup. "They are certainly hoping whomever takes over the project seeks to keep it as an arts-friendly and small, manufacturing-friendly environment."