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Baltimore Ave. redevelopment looks westward with Apple Lofts

The Baltimore Avenue corridor in West Philly supports a distinct mix of long-time residents and culturally- and technologically-savvy newcomers like few other corridors in the city. This will be solidified if the Zoning Board of Adjustment (ZBA) approves the construction of Apple Lofts, a proposed apartment building at the forsaken Apple Storage complex at 52nd and Willows Ave. 

Andrew Eisenstein, a managing partner at Iron-Stone Strategic Capital Partners, is hoping to build 112 studio and one and two-bedroom apartments at the former storage facility. The development would be supported by 1,000 square feet of commercial space on the first floor, which Eisenstein says could offer food retail or a daycare center, among other possible uses. Parking for 94 vehicles would be included. Iron-Stone is still waiting for the ZBA to decide on whether or not to grant a variance for the development. 

Iron-Stone is enthusiastic about the proposed addition of Apple Lofts. "It's a really innovative project near growing businesses," touts Eisenstein. He adds that it would be the only high-rise building in the neighborhood, and would unfurl wonderful views of the Center and University City skyline. Eisenstein also draws attention to the building's location, which is convenient to the Baltimore Ave. and 52nd St. business strips, and the Route 34 trolley

According to Eisenstein, Apple Lofts enjoys the support of Cedar Park Neighbors and Walnut Hill Community Association. To be fair, some neighbors have concerns that this redevelopment could drive taxes up, which is often an anxiety in up-and-coming sections of Philadelphia. If approved, the apartments will be competitively priced, with studios going for $800, one-bedroom units being offered for $1,100, and two-bedroom apartments renting for $1,400. 

The Apple Storage structure is unique for how it was built. Eisenstein says that the building was constructed entirely out of brick and concrete so it could withstand fire. Iron-Stone hopes to begin construction in three or four months, depending on how the ZBA rules. Hopefully Apple Lofts can continue the trend of bringing in new residents without displacing existing ones a little west on Baltimore Ave.  

Writer: Andy Sharpe
Source: Andrew Eisenstein, Iron-Stone Strategic Capital Partners
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