PMC Backtracks On Affordable Housing Stipulation


Much of One Water Street's bonus height is due to promises from PMC Property Group to include 25 affordable housing units. | Photo: Inga Saffron, for The Inquirer

Much of One Water Street’s bonus height is due to promises from PMC Property Group to include 25 affordable housing units. | Photo: Inga Saffron, for The Inquirer

  • Inga Saffron discusses the masterful gaming of Philadelphia’s zoning system by PMC Property Group, whose nearly complete One Water Street owes an extra 48 feet of height—roughly five stories—to a promise made to provide 25 units at affordable rates. That provision will not be honored, necessitating a restart on the entire zoning process—Planning Commission and Civic Design Review vettings included—on a building that is virtually finished. Perhaps the public interest will be recompensed with some form of artwork, or the retroactive inclusion of a ground-floor retail component, regardless of the fact that PMC was originally excused from such a requirement, as the market was thought too underdeveloped to support retail on the waterfront so early in the activation of its master plan.
  • Klip Collective reveals its latest installation today, Vacant America: the Bok building, which “intertwines physical objects like school desks and chairs with audiovisual elements like interviews and ambient sound,” says Technically Philly, in order “to evoke memories of the building’s previous life” as Bok Technical High School. Yet no such artist statement has placated the critics to Lindsay Scannapieco’s reuse of the school building as a creative hub, which they regard as a harbinger of gentrification. That reaction incites a pugnacious defense from Klip Collective director Ricardo Rivera, who calls the installation “an honest tribute to the building and the people who were there.”
  • It was announced yesterday that an anonymous buyer has purchased the most expensive residential transaction in Philadelphia history:$17.85 million, for the two-story, 8,900-square-foot penthouse of Tom Scannapieco’s 26-story 500 Walnut. When the ultra-high-end space is ready next spring, Curbed Philly tells us its owner will enjoy a private elevator, multiple balconies, fireplaces, and a roof terrace overlooking Independence Hall.
About the author

Stephen Currall recently received his BA in history from Arcadia University. Before beginning doctoral studies, he is pursuing his interest in local history, specifically just how Philadelphians engage their vibrant past. Besides skimming through 18th century letters, Steve is also interested in music and travel.

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