The Quirky Resurgence Of Fishtown’s Front Street


"View of south and front facade of El Chalet, a new apartment building at 1312 N. Front Street in Fishtown." | Photo: Sam Oberter

“View of south and front facade of El Chalet, a new apartment building at 1312 N. Front Street in Fishtown.” | Photo: Sam Oberter

  • In the last six years, Fishtown’s “Front Street has unexpectedly stepped out of the shadows,” says Inga Saffron. Yet as developer Roland Kassis plans for some more warehouse-to-eatery conversions—including a Lebanese food market—and Steve and Krista Yutzy-Burkey open their arts-focused daycare center there, we are nonetheless reminded  “that the gritty world of the El is just outside the door.” Architect Brian Phillips’ remarkable design for the apartment building El Chalet invokes the Alps in its bid to deflect the Market-Frankford Line’s conservation-halting din; the result, he says, is “gritty and scary, but also a little bit awesome.”
  • Confident in the foot traffic induced by a reawakened Divine Lorraine and Metropolitan Opera House, developers in Francisville have evinced a farsighted approach when considering the commercial elements to their projects, comments Naked Philly. Case in point: Trinity Realty Companies’ planned 8-unit condominium building at 1526-30 Ridge Avenue, with its foundation just poured, still has no committed retail tenant. “This comes as no surprise, as many of the buildings that have already been built on Ridge are still looking for commercial tenants.”
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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