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Renderings by Canno Design (E. Hart Stable); Groundswell Design Group (Cherry Street Pier); WRT (Beury)

Mapping 15 interesting adaptive reuse projects underway in Philly

From a hospital-turned-apartments to tricycle warehouse-turned-school

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Editor’s note: This article was last published on March 1, 2017 and has since been updated with the most recent information.

At this moment, there are nearly 30 high-rises under construction, changing the Philly skyline one by one. Yet a number of smaller, but significant changes are underway at more than two dozen already-built properties throughout the city, too. An old tricycle-making warehouse is being turned into a school in North Philly. A historic school is being turned into affordable housing for veterans.

Yes, while Philly is in the midst of a new construction boom, we’d argue that the city is also experiencing a wave of adaptive reuse developments—projects that use a building for something other than its originally designed purpose.

While there plenty of adaptive reuse projects in the works, here we’ve mapped some of the most intriguing and interesting projects currently underway all over Philly.

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1. Wayne Junction

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Past: Industrial warehouses

Future: Mixed-use, residential development

A couple of developers have big plans for the Wayne Junction neighborhood, which dates back to the 1880s and is a National Historic District known for its industrial past. PhillyOffice Retail announced its $12 million plans to turn seven properties into a transformative mixed-use development complete with a brewery/distillery, restaurants, apartments, offices, and retail. In the same neck of the woods, Mosaic Development is turning a bunch of manufacturing buildings a mixed-use development called Golaski Park.

Check out this map for a closer look at all of the buildings involved in the adaptive reuse projects.

via Google Streetview

2. The Beury Building

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3701 N Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19140

Past: National Bank of North Philadelphia

Future: Residential, commercial development

After 40 years of abandonment, the return of the iconic Beury building on North Broad is imminent, with remediation work currently underway. The 14-story structure was designed by William Harold Lee as the National Bank of North Philadelphia and is considered an Art Deco masterpieceShift Capital’s plans to revive the building call for 62 one-bedroom units and commercial space built out during the first phase. The second phase includes the construction of an annex, which will add 10,000 square feet of retail, 100,000 square feet of commercial space, and up to 80 residential units.

An aerial rendering of the Beury Building in Philadelphia. The facade is brick. Rendering by WRT

3. 1717 W. Allegheny Avenue

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1717 W Allegheny Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19132

Past: Tricycle factory

Future: High school

Long a vacant eyesore in Tioga, this warehouse at 17th and Allegheny Avenue will be restored and become part of Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School’s new seven-acre campus. The warehouse was a former A. Mecky Co. Factory that produced tricycles.

Rendering by Blackney Hayes Architects

4. Edison 64

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700 W Somerset St
Philadelphia, PA 19133

Past: High school

Future: Veteran housing

The annex of the long-shuttered Edison High School is set to become Edison 64, a 68-unit veterans housing development. The high school was designed in the early 1900s by Lloyd Titus in the Collegiate Gothic Revival style, but the historic high school itself has since been stripped of its interiors. The project includes 60,000 square feet of residential development and is dedicated to the 54 alumni of the high school that lost their lives in the Vietnam War, the most of any high school in the country.

via Mosaic Development Partners/Orens Brothers

5. Umbrella Factory

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1401 N 5th St
Philadelphia, PA 19122

Past: Factory

Future: Apartments

This hulking factory at 5th and Master sat vacant for decades, until Core Realty bought it in 2015. It’s been undergoing renovations ever since, with plans to convert the nine-story factory into a 181-unit apartment building complete with a rooftop pool and fitness center. With construction nearing its end, the Umbrella’s website says it is leasing for spring 2018.

6. St. Joseph’s Hospital

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1600 W Girard Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19130

Past: Hospital

Future: Apartments

Developer MMPartners, which recently completed the adaptive reuse project of Pyramid Lofts, quietly purchased St. Joseph’s Hospital in Francisville in 2017. Construction is now underway to turn the hospital into a 90-unit apartment development with a fitness center, basketball court, roofdeck, and retail. Its anticipated completion is 2019.

A post shared by mmpartners (@mmpartners) on

7. The Studebaker Building

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667 N Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

Past: Auto plant and showroom

Future: Co-working

The historic Studebaker building at 667 N. Broad Street originally served as a manufacturing plant and showroom for the company namesake. But soon, it will be home to Divine Works, a coworking space by Benjamin’s Desk, which signed a lease in 2017 to transform more than 17,000 square feet of space in the building.

Photo by Melissa Romero

8. 631 N Broad Street

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631 N Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

Past: Horse stable

Future: Apartments, retail

The Italianate-style, 30,000-square-foot E. Hart horse stable was built in 1867 and is currently being turned into a mixed-use apartment building, with the anticipated opening set for spring 2018. North Broad Living Management’s adaptive reuse project 41 apartments and 5,000 square feet of ground retail to 631 N. Broad Street.

Rendering by Canno Design

9. Independence Press Building

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525 N 11th St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

Past: Factory

Future: Apartments

This hulking warehouse, built in 1917 as the headquarters for paper box production companies, sat abandoned for years until it was purchased for $5 million in 2015. It has been under construction for months now and will re-debut as a 92-loft apartment building.

A post shared by Yeho Bostick (@phillybeardo) on

10. 915 Spring Garden Street

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915 Spring Garden St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

Past: Reading Railroad quarters

Future: Creative space for artists

This warehouse originally served as a main stopping point along the Reading Railroad, accommodating railroad employees. In later years, it was an artist’s live-work community. Developer Arts+Crafts Holdings is the beginning stages of its plan to turn the warehouse into a mixed-use space with food and beverage on the ground floor and artists studios and creative workplaces on the upper floors.

Photo by Melissa Romero

11. Heid Building

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323 N 13th St
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Past: Hat-making warehouse

Future: Apartments

The Heid Building at 323 N. 13th Street used to be the home of Frank P. Heid & Company, which once held the title of being the largest hat- and cap-making company in Philly. After sitting vacant for more than a decade, it is set to become home to 96 market-rate apartments by PRDC Properties. The developer is working with a crew of students from Ben Franklin High School’s Career & Technical Education Vocational Center on the conversion.

Photo by Melissa Romero

12. Cherry Street Pier

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121 N Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 629-3200
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Past: City-owned pier

Future: Creative community space

Pier 9, long abandoned along the Delaware River Waterfront, is set to undergo at $4 million makeover that will turn it into Cherry Street Pier, a creative community space, complete with an open-air garden, food vendors, pop-up retail markets, and shipping containers-turned-offices.

The interior of the Cherry Street Pier. The ceiling is high and vaulted. There are people sitting and walking on the ground floor. Renderings by Groundswell

13. Frankford Chocolate Factory

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2101 Washington Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19146

Past: Wallpaper factory, storage facility, chocolate factory

Future: Mixed-use residential

The iconic Frankford Chocolate Factory in Graduate Hospital has long been a fixture along Washington Avenue. But after proposed projects came and went over the years, it looks like the factory will finally get a second lease on life with talks to redevelop the factory into a mixed-use residential project. Most recently, the factory was added to the National Register of Historic Places, which means the developer can now take advantage of the federal Historic Tax Credit.

Courtesy of Google Earth Pro

14. Lincoln Square

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1001 S Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Past: Train shed for the Philadelphia-Wilmington-Baltimore Railroad line

Future: Grocery store

Construction is underway at Lincoln Square at South Broad and Washington, where a nine-story mixed-use building is in the works. The historic train shed, which once served as a major hub for the Philadelphia-Wilmington-Baltimore Railroad line and was a funeral stop of President Abraham Lincoln after his assassination, was preserved and will be converted into a grocery store.

15. Bok

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1901 S 9th St
Philadelphia, PA 19148

Past: Edward W. Bok Technical High School

Future: Center for creatives, day care, roof top bar, etc.

Since 2013, Lindsey Scannapieco and her team at BOK have been transforming the historic Edward W. Bok Technical High School into a center for makers, creative types, and non-profits bit by bit. Every summer the roof top becomes a restaurant-bar, and most recently the Art Deco theater and other spaces became available for weddings and events. Scannapieco says the BOK building is a multi-phase project that she expects to evolve over time.

A post shared by Building Bok (@buildingbok) on

1. Wayne Junction

Philadelphia, PA 19144
via Google Streetview

Past: Industrial warehouses

Future: Mixed-use, residential development

A couple of developers have big plans for the Wayne Junction neighborhood, which dates back to the 1880s and is a National Historic District known for its industrial past. PhillyOffice Retail announced its $12 million plans to turn seven properties into a transformative mixed-use development complete with a brewery/distillery, restaurants, apartments, offices, and retail. In the same neck of the woods, Mosaic Development is turning a bunch of manufacturing buildings a mixed-use development called Golaski Park.

Check out this map for a closer look at all of the buildings involved in the adaptive reuse projects.

2. The Beury Building

3701 N Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19140
An aerial rendering of the Beury Building in Philadelphia. The facade is brick. Rendering by WRT

Past: National Bank of North Philadelphia

Future: Residential, commercial development

After 40 years of abandonment, the return of the iconic Beury building on North Broad is imminent, with remediation work currently underway. The 14-story structure was designed by William Harold Lee as the National Bank of North Philadelphia and is considered an Art Deco masterpieceShift Capital’s plans to revive the building call for 62 one-bedroom units and commercial space built out during the first phase. The second phase includes the construction of an annex, which will add 10,000 square feet of retail, 100,000 square feet of commercial space, and up to 80 residential units.

3701 N Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19140

3. 1717 W. Allegheny Avenue

1717 W Allegheny Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19132
Rendering by Blackney Hayes Architects

Past: Tricycle factory

Future: High school

Long a vacant eyesore in Tioga, this warehouse at 17th and Allegheny Avenue will be restored and become part of Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School’s new seven-acre campus. The warehouse was a former A. Mecky Co. Factory that produced tricycles.

1717 W Allegheny Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19132

4. Edison 64

700 W Somerset St, Philadelphia, PA 19133
via Mosaic Development Partners/Orens Brothers

Past: High school

Future: Veteran housing

The annex of the long-shuttered Edison High School is set to become Edison 64, a 68-unit veterans housing development. The high school was designed in the early 1900s by Lloyd Titus in the Collegiate Gothic Revival style, but the historic high school itself has since been stripped of its interiors. The project includes 60,000 square feet of residential development and is dedicated to the 54 alumni of the high school that lost their lives in the Vietnam War, the most of any high school in the country.

700 W Somerset St
Philadelphia, PA 19133

5. Umbrella Factory

1401 N 5th St, Philadelphia, PA 19122

Past: Factory

Future: Apartments

This hulking factory at 5th and Master sat vacant for decades, until Core Realty bought it in 2015. It’s been undergoing renovations ever since, with plans to convert the nine-story factory into a 181-unit apartment building complete with a rooftop pool and fitness center. With construction nearing its end, the Umbrella’s website says it is leasing for spring 2018.

1401 N 5th St
Philadelphia, PA 19122

6. St. Joseph’s Hospital

1600 W Girard Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Past: Hospital

Future: Apartments

Developer MMPartners, which recently completed the adaptive reuse project of Pyramid Lofts, quietly purchased St. Joseph’s Hospital in Francisville in 2017. Construction is now underway to turn the hospital into a 90-unit apartment development with a fitness center, basketball court, roofdeck, and retail. Its anticipated completion is 2019.

1600 W Girard Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19130

7. The Studebaker Building

667 N Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19123
Photo by Melissa Romero

Past: Auto plant and showroom

Future: Co-working

The historic Studebaker building at 667 N. Broad Street originally served as a manufacturing plant and showroom for the company namesake. But soon, it will be home to Divine Works, a coworking space by Benjamin’s Desk, which signed a lease in 2017 to transform more than 17,000 square feet of space in the building.

667 N Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

8. 631 N Broad Street

631 N Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19123
Rendering by Canno Design

Past: Horse stable

Future: Apartments, retail

The Italianate-style, 30,000-square-foot E. Hart horse stable was built in 1867 and is currently being turned into a mixed-use apartment building, with the anticipated opening set for spring 2018. North Broad Living Management’s adaptive reuse project 41 apartments and 5,000 square feet of ground retail to 631 N. Broad Street.

631 N Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

9. Independence Press Building

525 N 11th St, Philadelphia, PA 19123

Past: Factory

Future: Apartments

This hulking warehouse, built in 1917 as the headquarters for paper box production companies, sat abandoned for years until it was purchased for $5 million in 2015. It has been under construction for months now and will re-debut as a 92-loft apartment building.

525 N 11th St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

10. 915 Spring Garden Street

915 Spring Garden St, Philadelphia, PA 19123
Photo by Melissa Romero

Past: Reading Railroad quarters

Future: Creative space for artists

This warehouse originally served as a main stopping point along the Reading Railroad, accommodating railroad employees. In later years, it was an artist’s live-work community. Developer Arts+Crafts Holdings is the beginning stages of its plan to turn the warehouse into a mixed-use space with food and beverage on the ground floor and artists studios and creative workplaces on the upper floors.

915 Spring Garden St
Philadelphia, PA 19123

11. Heid Building

323 N 13th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Photo by Melissa Romero

Past: Hat-making warehouse

Future: Apartments

The Heid Building at 323 N. 13th Street used to be the home of Frank P. Heid & Company, which once held the title of being the largest hat- and cap-making company in Philly. After sitting vacant for more than a decade, it is set to become home to 96 market-rate apartments by PRDC Properties. The developer is working with a crew of students from Ben Franklin High School’s Career & Technical Education Vocational Center on the conversion.

323 N 13th St
Philadelphia, PA 19107

12. Cherry Street Pier

121 N Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19106
The interior of the Cherry Street Pier. The ceiling is high and vaulted. There are people sitting and walking on the ground floor. Renderings by Groundswell

Past: City-owned pier

Future: Creative community space

Pier 9, long abandoned along the Delaware River Waterfront, is set to undergo at $4 million makeover that will turn it into Cherry Street Pier, a creative community space, complete with an open-air garden, food vendors, pop-up retail markets, and shipping containers-turned-offices.

121 N Christopher Columbus Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19106

13. Frankford Chocolate Factory

2101 Washington Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19146
Courtesy of Google Earth Pro

Past: Wallpaper factory, storage facility, chocolate factory

Future: Mixed-use residential

The iconic Frankford Chocolate Factory in Graduate Hospital has long been a fixture along Washington Avenue. But after proposed projects came and went over the years, it looks like the factory will finally get a second lease on life with talks to redevelop the factory into a mixed-use residential project. Most recently, the factory was added to the National Register of Historic Places, which means the developer can now take advantage of the federal Historic Tax Credit.

2101 Washington Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19146

14. Lincoln Square

1001 S Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19147

Past: Train shed for the Philadelphia-Wilmington-Baltimore Railroad line

Future: Grocery store

Construction is underway at Lincoln Square at South Broad and Washington, where a nine-story mixed-use building is in the works. The historic train shed, which once served as a major hub for the Philadelphia-Wilmington-Baltimore Railroad line and was a funeral stop of President Abraham Lincoln after his assassination, was preserved and will be converted into a grocery store.

1001 S Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19147

15. Bok

1901 S 9th St, Philadelphia, PA 19148

Past: Edward W. Bok Technical High School

Future: Center for creatives, day care, roof top bar, etc.

Since 2013, Lindsey Scannapieco and her team at BOK have been transforming the historic Edward W. Bok Technical High School into a center for makers, creative types, and non-profits bit by bit. Every summer the roof top becomes a restaurant-bar, and most recently the Art Deco theater and other spaces became available for weddings and events. Scannapieco says the BOK building is a multi-phase project that she expects to evolve over time.

1901 S 9th St
Philadelphia, PA 19148