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    • he National Shrine of Saint Rita of Cascia on South Broad Street.

Shrine of St. Rita on South Broad protected from wrecking ball

The National Shrine of St. Rita of Cascia won admission to the local register of historic places, preserving the immense Catholic church facing the Broad Street Diner from demolition or serious…

    • 2019 01 11 e lee corey loftus 1515 arch philadelphia historical commission penn student preservation advocate 2

23-year-old superfan wins protections for West Philly gingerbread houses

Between the University of Pennsylvania and Cedar Park in West Philadelphia lies what is believed to be the largest collection of Victorian homes in America. Only a handful of them are…

    • Historic Garsed-Bromley house, aka Northwood Frankford Community Y, February 2014

Frankford Y's new owner promises he won't bring opioid recovery center to historic mansion

After a decade of vacancy, a new owner has taken control of a neglected 19th century Northeast Philadelphia landmark. The brownstone mansion at 4704 Leiper Street, which most recently operated as…

    • The Frankford Chocolate Factory at 21st and Washington Streets is in the process of demolition.

Philadelphia demolitions hit record high in 2018

Developers began tearing down a record number of Philadelphia buildings in 2018, with more demolitions getting started over the last 12 months than any other year on record. Data from the…

    • The beloved split-flap departure board at 30th Street Station.

Amtrak may spare 30th Street Station's beloved flipping board

The beloved split-flap sign at 30th Street Station, in Philadelphia, may have earned an 11th hour reprieve following public outcry over a proposal to replace the iconic “clickety-clackety” schedule board. Congressman…

    • Wharton-Wesley United Methodist Church in Cobbs Creek reimagined a parking lot as a green space.

Sacred spaces reimagined with preservation, Philly communities in mind

Philadelphia has no shortage of lux condos carved out of historic churches but how about a grocery store with stained glass windows? That was one of the ideas shared Tuesday at…

    • A 2006 photo of former Philadelphia Mayor John F. Street.

Former Mayor John Street criticizes Kenney's record on preservation; backs new PAC

Former mayor John F. Street has joined the ranks of preservationists who say Mayor Jim Kenney's administration and City Council have failed to make historic preservation a priority in the face…

    • The 5600 block of Ridge Avenue sits within a new historic district.

Historical Commission approves Ridge Avenue district

The Philadelphia Historical Commission granted protections to 188 buildings along a five-mile stretch of Ridge Avenue in Roxborough on Friday, creating the largest new historic district the city has seen since…

    • Germantown Boys and Girls Club

Historic Germantown Boys and Girls Club spared wrecking ball

High atop the municipal building at 1515 Arch Street on Tuesday morning, the long battle over the future of the Germantown Boys and Girls Club appeared to end in détente. For…

    • 2018 10 02 b larrison philadelphia historic lower dublin school is being restored by albanian american association 8

A NE Philly school designed by a friend of Ben Franklin to be reborn as Albanian cultural center

It was a schoolhouse where Revolutionary-era leaders offered a "polite education" to young men in the then-new city of Philadelphia, but by 2006, the Lower Dublin Academy was empty and crumbling.…

    • A session on some bricks-and-mortar rebuilding tips. | Jordan Cassway for PennPraxis
Eyes on the Street

A Neighborhood Preservation Toolkit created by Philadelphians, for Philadelphians

To many, preservationist might seem a limiting definition, applying to those dedicated to saving individual buildings where famous people were born or died, or where significant events took place. Preservationist can…

    • Hickman Temple AME Church, its facade reinforced and its doors open for its first Sunday service since April 2017.

Hickman Temple AME celebrates a win in the effort to preserve its historic church

Hickman Temple AME dominates the corner of 50th Street and Baltimore Avenue in West Philadelphia. This block-long, century-old church of slate and stone is a neighborhood icon in Cedar Park, a…

    • Freedom Theatre's exterior, where some flaking of the facade's surface can be seen above the sign facing Master Street.

Freedom Theatre's venerable home struggles to rebound from a very wet season

Freedom Theatre is having a tough year. For decades, this sprawling 1850s-mansion in North Philadelphia served as a vibrant hub for African-American artists, but the building — and the historic institution…

    • The Royal Theater's facade

No about-face on facadectomies in Philly just yet: They're still pretty rare here

On South Street, the front exterior of the Royal Theater still stands, encased in steel. The ornamented brick façade of the historic entertainment complex is all that is left of the…

    • Developer Steven Brown, who said his intention was to preserve the mural, said the building was on the verge of collapse.

A cherished mural falls victim to Philadelphia redevelopment

Driving by 20th and Fernon streets, Darryl Roberts thought the mural looked like something was missing. But he didn’t pay much attention. It was early evening, and he figured the sun had…

    • Jewelers' Row, September 2016

Historic preservation task force notes other cities' policies as it charts its own course

On Thursday, Philadelphia’s Historic Preservation Task Force released an outline of preservation challenges facing the city paired with policies other major American cities have adopted to protect notable aspects of their…

    • A view of St. Laurentius from Palmer Cemetery in 2015 | Michael Klusek, EOTS Flickr Group

St. Laurentius still stands in Fishtown, though more precariously

Fishtown’s St. Laurentius has seen better days. The 130-year-old-plus former Catholic Church is surrounded by a scraggly fence. Scaffolding wraps around its base, and black strips of netting covers stretches of…

    • Boyd Theatre interior, 2012 | Jeremy Marshall
Eyes on the Street

Design Advocacy Group's views on the Philadelphia Historic Preservation Task Force

We applauded last year when Mayor Kenney created a Historic Preservation Task Force and asked it to recommend how to avoid losses like the Boyd Theater and the impending disfigurement of Jewelers Row.…

    • philadelphia masjid 's underutilized 1.5-acre site on Wyalusing Avenue, formerly a Catholic school complex.

Three historic religious sites embark on a road to preservation and future service

Forty years ago, Zion Baptist Church was nationally renowned for the community services it provided from its main building on North Broad Street and an educational annex across the road. Under its energetic leader, Rev. Leon Sullivan, the church ran a homeless…

    • Flowers in Spruce Hill

New historic districts proposed for 3 Philly neighborhoods

After years of only protecting individual properties from demolition, the Philadelphia Historical Commission recently unveiled three new proposed historic districts. If they are approved at the June meeting, the commission…

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