Zoning board approves 80 apartments and retail at 12th and Chestnut

An affiliate of Brickstone realty company won zoning approval on Wednesday to develop an 80-unit apartment project that will take up about half the south side of Chestnut Street between 11th and 12th. The project will involve the demolition of two buildings and the renovation of an existing seven-story building.

The property in question includes four parcels, 1118-28 Chestnut St., which attorney Peter Kelsen described as “vacant, blighted, deteriorated structures,” and the finished product will be seven stories across.

There will be 60 one-bedroom units, ranging in size from 630-820 square feet, and 20 two-bedroom units between 1,054 sq. ft. and 1,183 sq. ft., according to Kelsen. The apartments will be on the third through sixth floors, with the first two stories dedicated to retail and commercial uses.

The developers received one variance, for parking. The site is zoned CMX-5, and while L&I said the project would need to include 24 parking spaces, Kelsen said the code would only require 12. At any rate, no parking will be provided. Kelsen said that operators of several nearby parking garages had agreed to dedicate spaces to tenants in case there turns out to be demand for it. He said that demand is unlikely.

The developers have already applied for a demolition permit, and Kelsen said they expect to begin work on the site within a few months.

About the author

Jared Brey, Zoning and development reporter

Jared Brey writes about development, zoning policy, and city government for He wasn't interested in being a reporter until halfway through a master's program in journalism at Temple University that he intended to parlay into an academic career. His work has appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News, City Paper, Business Journal, and Metropolis. 

Jared grew up in Montgomery County and moved to Philadelphia in 2005. He has since lived in Brewerytown, the Italian Market, North Central, Bella Vista, and East Passyunk. He believes he will stay in South Philadelphia. Follow him on Twitter @jaredbrey, or send him tips at

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