7th Street, Dauphin Street, and Germantown Avenue all intersect at a point, creating a triangular property to the south which is currently sitting mostly vacant. Historically, a rooming house called the Washington Hotel stood here, operating until the 1970s, when it was torn down. There are some industrial buildings still standing on the southern side of this property, but they’ve clearly seen better days. In a different location, we might say that this property is ripe for redevelopment.
Being honest, we’re a little surprised that we’re reporting on a sizable development here at 2224 Germantown Ave., given its in-betweener location. A couple blocks to the east and it would blend in with the projects that have been pushing into Norris Square from the south and east. A couple blocks to the west and it would fit into the narrative of student housing spreading from Temple. And if it were located a couple blocks to the south, it would simply be an extension of South Kensington development. As it sits though, it doesn’t really fit into any of those buckets. And sure, we’ve seen several infill projects in this vicinity, but nothing significant until now.
But the folks at Trinity Realty have a strong track record so we believe they’re onto something as they’re looking to redevelop this parcel into a four-story mixed-use building. The project is designed by Canno and calls for 72 apartments over a fresh food store, with 52 underground parking spots. Unlike some other projects we’ve seen that have utilized the fresh food store zoning bonus, this project will have a generous commercial space for said business, with over 16K sqft of retail on the first floor. Whatever business eventually opens here, they’ll have the pleasure of operating out of a very nice looking building. Here are some renderings, thanks to the project’s Civic Design Review application.
This is a by-right development, so we are fairly confident that it will actually move forward as proposed. Looking into the future, we wonder whether this project will help bridge the gaps between the development hubs we mentioned above, and inspire other developers to consider larger scale projects in this immediate area. Certainly, the sizable grocery store that’s being proposed will make this a more desirable place to live, and that should also drive additional development nearby. At the very least, look for additional infill development moving forward- there’s certainly enough vacant land around here to accommodate plenty of projects.