Solomonic Insight Needed In St. Laurentius Reuse

 

St. Laurentius Roman Catholic Church in Fishtown was approved for placement on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places in July 2015 after a contentious battle between parish members and neighbors against the Archdiocese of Philadelphia who opposed the designation. A nomination to legally protect the interior of the church goes before the Historical Commission's Committee on Historic Designation on March 17 | Photo: Michael Bixler

St. Laurentius Roman Catholic Church in Fishtown was approved for placement on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places in July 2015 after a contentious battle between parish members and neighbors against the Archdiocese of Philadelphia who opposed the designation. | Photo: Michael Bixler

  • Parishioners of St. Laurentius Church may have beaten the odds in having their ethnic Polish church granted historic designation, but as PlanPhilly advisor— and lifelong Fishtowner—Michael Greenle argues on Eyes on the Street, the risk of its eventual demolition is just as plausible as ever. Taking the case of the Church of the Assumption as a cue, Greenle feels that the difficulty in raising the funds for its conversion into an event space would be too great, allowing for Archdiocesan lawyers to contrive some way to see to its demolition. That’s why, after much consideration, he is urging the Faithful Laurentians, a group actively discouraging developer Leo Voloshin’s plan to convert the structure into 23 apartments, to accept the situation as it stands in the interest of ensuring that at least the structure’s exterior will continue to grace the Fishtown skyline.
  • In the October edition of Philadelphia magazine, Malcolm Burnley wonders what is keeping the city from becoming a bone fide 24-hour city “despite the renaissance of Center City over the past 20 years.” Most of the necessary elements—a residential downtown, around the clock subway service (on weekends)—for a dynamic nightlife are there, but the culture to sustain it is not.
  • The City is set to expedite and expand the bidding process for public works projects when it implements an online purchasing system next year, reports Keystone Crossroads. An additional $300,000 each year will be needed for the improvements, but longterm savings and increased access for minority and women vendors are expected.
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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  1. The Fishtown geniuses just ensured the church building will be demoed by voting down the proposal offered by the developer to convert into 23 apartments.

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