PlanPhilly

Real Estate Development

    • Conceptual plan for Lancaster Mews presented at Architectural Committee, May 2016

Lancaster Mews redevelopment gets architectural committee support

Lancaster Mews was designated historic in 2015 in response to a demolition threat. A developer was eyeing the block-sized lot, lined with late 19th century mixed-use buildings, and neighbors got wind…

    • Third Street in Northern Liberties. | Emma Lee/WHYY

Pew: Four percent of Philadelphia census tracts gentrified from 2000-2014

How much gentrification is really taking place in Philadelphia, and how much are residents worrying about this? In neighborhoods surrounding Center City and University City, the sense of rapid change is…

    • 13th & Washington | Cope Linder

Councilman Johnson introduces bill to stop Bart Blatstein’s proposed Broad and Washington development

Councilman Kenyatta Johnson has listened to the critics and he’s doing something about it. Not his critics, though: Bart Blatstein’s, who have lambasted the real estate developer’s plans for a massive…

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ABOUT REAL ESTATE DEVELOPMENT

Though it often has a negative connotation, development represents the absolutely crucial element of demand to use the urban form. Once completed, the development project ends up helping to define the built environment for future generations. Without development, there would be no city to plan. Despite the stigma often attached to it, development can meet both community needs and earn a profit when its design and program contributes to the larger urban framework.

It is important that development be regulated so that it supports the public health, safety, and welfare of a neighborhood, though this can be difficult to achieve today given the pressures facing the public sector due to rising social services needs and decreasing tax bases. Private developers often have leverage in these cases, which can lead to some unhealthy compromises that negatively affect our built environment. It is possible for development to be over-regulated, which often discourages investors from investing in particular cities. Philadelphia is often seen as a city that has outdated local controls, which in turn delays the development approval process. However, the re-zoning process currently underway by the Zoning Code Commission should go a long way in addressing this.  The goal is to set standards that encourage a balance of public good and private development.

UPCOMING EVENTS IN REAL ESTATE DEVELOPMENT

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