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  • Writer's pictureAndre Watson

Crane Watch: Developers thinking big as massive projects are proposed across the region

A crane above a residential project under construction at Broad Street and Washington Avenue


The Philadelphia Business Journal recently updated its Crane Watch map, giving a visual representation of development projects in the region that have been proposed, are currently under construction, or have recently been completed.

Strewn across the map are new residential, industrial, life sciences and higher education projects getting underway in Philadelphia and across the broader region.

In addition to over 10,000 multifamily units that are expected to deliver in Northern Liberties, Fishtown and South Kensington over the next three years, pivotal residential projects are being plotted in other corners of Philadelphia as well. South along the Delaware from the River Wards construction boom is the long in-flux parcel at 1341 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd. At the South Philadelphia site, New York-based Silverstein Properties outlined a massive project proposal consisting of two 22-story residential buildings totaling 612 units overlooking the river.

In Center City, continuing the saga of the 76ers' arena proposal, developer 76 DevCo tacked on a 395-unit apartment tower to the controversial Market East project in August. The $250 million, 20-story tower would be 20% affordable units, an element added in response to concerns about displacement in the Chinatown neighborhood.

A rendering shows the Philadelphia 76ers' proposed Center City arena looking southwest, including a new residential tower.


Another major project gained more clarity in recent weeks when the City of Philadelphia selected National Real Estate Development and Frontier Development & Hospitality Group to transform the former Family Court building along Benjamin Franklin Parkway into a boutique hotel and build a new location for the African American Museum. The African American Museum will be reconstructed next door on an 88,000-square-foot parking lot at 1901 Wood St. while the 250-room hotel with a restaurant, bar and event space would rise at 1801 Vine St.

A rendering shows a future view of a boutique hotel in the former Family Court building at 1801 Vine St.


North Broad Street is also catching the eye of developers. At the corner of Cecil B. Moore Avenue and North Broad Street, developer Bart Blatstein's Tower Investments revealed plans for a 15-story, 245-unit apartment building. The land, adjacent to Temple's campus and the Liacouras Center, is owned by Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority. A few blocks south, Landmark Properties plans to build a 28-story, nearly 900-bed mixed-use building on Temple-owned land that would largely be housing for university students.

Further north, Philadelphia-based Shift Capital and New York-based Essence Development plan to build 2 million square feet of commercial, residential, retail and community space at a long-neglected site next to Amtrak's North Philadelphia train station at 2932 N. Broad St.

On the industrial side, development continues in Philadelphia's suburbs. In Pottstown, an Atlanta developer bought 169 acres of land to build a 1.9 million-square-foot industrial complex across three warehouses to be called the I-76 Trade Center located at 1130 Pottstown Pike. In Langhorne, a Boston developer recently secured a $114 million loan to move forward with an 814,567-square-foot industrial complex called the Lower Bucks Logistics Hub at 1600 E. Old Lincoln Highway.

Across the Delaware, on Woodbury, New Jersey's Broad Street, plans were revealed for a sprawling health care and education campus. Under the proposal, the former Inspira Woodbury hospital site in Gloucester County would be redeveloped into a $250 million mixed-use campus. What is being dubbed the Woodbury Health and Education Innovation District would include market-rate housing, a Center for Innovation in Community Health, a hotel/conference center and restaurant, retail offerings, and senior housing to complement the health care services currently provided and planned on the 14.6-acre campus.

Check out our updated Crane Watch map below (and zoom in for a better look) or click here to view the full-scale map of local real estate projects. Simply click any location on the map to see the name of the project with the option to view more details on its scope and progress. Check back regularly to see new projects in the works across the region.

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