Critical Day Tomorrow For Two Major Preservation Cases

 

Courtyard view of Levy-Leas mansion, 400 S. 40th

Courtyard view of Levy-Leas mansion, 400 S. 40th

Tomorrow at 2PM, the Board of L&I Review will rule on the appeal of the demolition permit for the Church of the Assumption at 11th and Spring Garden Street. That ruling will be announced without testimony taken and is based on the Historical Commission’s own finding of economic hardship for the owner, John Wei, who wishes to tear the historic church down. There is still an appeal pending on the case in the Commonwealth Court; lawyers for the Callowhill Neighbors Association, disputing demolition, will likely then appeal the case to the Court of Common Pleas. Read the latest on that case by our reporter Christopher Mote HERE.

After that ruling comes down, the Board will hear the final arguments (45 minutes each for and against) the University of Pennsylvania’s plan to tear down the historic Levy Leas mansion at 400 S. 40th Street in order to build graduate student housing. Read about that case HERE and HERE.

In both cases, the Historical Commission has granted hardship to the owner to allow demolition.

The hearing will take place at the Board of L & I Review Hearing Room, 1515 Arch Street, 18th Floor. It is open to the public.

About the author

Hidden City co-editor Nathaniel Popkin’s latest book is the novel Lion and Leopard (The Head and The Hand Press). He is also the author of Song of the City (Four Walls Eight Windows/Basic Books) and The Possible City (Camino Books). He is also senior writer and script editor of the Emmy-winning documentary series “Philadelphia: The Great Experiment” and the fiction review editor of Cleaver Magazine.



1 Comment


  1. Why is it when they need to tear down somthing it’s a hardship because you can only look at this property by itself , but when their raising money you have to think of the university as a whole ? This is crap ! 40,000 + vacant lots and these knuckle daggers HAVE to tear down this beautiful old mansion . They can’t build anywhere else ? The historical commission should just RESIGN ! They are an embarrassment at preservation . The
    university should be stripped of some of its nonprofit status because profit is all they care about !
    Makes me wanna just spit .

Recent Posts
A Broad Street Line Extension Would Need “A Broad Base Of Support”

A Broad Street Line Extension Would Need “A Broad Base Of Support”

March 30, 2015  |  Morning Blend

Previewing the fundraising effort for a BSL extension to the Navy Yard, Woodlands meets fundraising goal, environmental education in a “native meadow” in the Northwest, and Philly once again cited as excellent biking city > more

Before The Bro Bar: Unboxing The Former Home Of Finnegan's Wake

Before The Bro Bar: Unboxing The Former Home Of Finnegan’s Wake

March 30, 2015  |  The Shadow Knows

Finnegan's Wake, the infamous Irish pub at 2nd and Spring Garden, closed its doors last summer after a contract for selling the building fell through. The former box and casket factory now sits vacant and off the market. The Shadow saddles up to the bar to give us the building's industrious background > more

The Industrial Bones Of South Philadelphia

The Industrial Bones Of South Philadelphia

March 27, 2015  |  Vantage

Think of Pier 70 and picture of the many many shopping options, from Walmart and Home Depot to Superfresh and AC Moore. But think of it a century ago for a totally different picture of industrial South Philadelphia. Theresa Everline tells the story of Baugh & Sons, a bygone major fertilizer company on the riverfront > more

The Prognosticating Developers

The Prognosticating Developers

March 27, 2015  |  Morning Blend

Three ascendent ZIPs and their developers, Temple to lead the effort in environmental cleanup of Kensington, Council approves Squilla's UEDs, and checking up with Rodin Square > more

Past & Future On Chestnut's 700 Block

Past & Future On Chestnut’s 700 Block

March 26, 2015  |  Morning Blend

Four commercial properties to be nominated for historical designation, a 32-story apartment tower planned for 7th & Chestnut, and Philly's population ever so slightly increases > more

Difficulty Ahead In Preserving Socioeconomic Diversity For Gentrifying Neighborhoods

Difficulty Ahead In Preserving Socioeconomic Diversity For Gentrifying Neighborhoods

March 25, 2015  |  Morning Blend

What the data suggests for the future of economic equality in Philadelphia, Tinicum approves PHL runway expansion plans, food trucks push for less restrictive municipal regulations, and Clark urges Archdiocese to refrain from demolishing Fishtown church just yet > more