The unique nature of these homes is immediately apparent. So is the quality of the original construction: brick, steel, timber.

Walk down the 4200 block of Viola Street in West Philadelphia and you’ll notice some interesting balustrades on two of the historic Victorian row homes. One has no balustrade at all, and the other balustrade is constructed from 2x4s. Habitat for Humanity’s Cassie O’Connel wants you to know that this will change. “There’s going to be a huge difference,” O’Connell said. “Two homes, side-by-side with all new balustrades and painted historic colors. I think some of the after photos will be very impressive.”

Newer bigger buildings are pushing down rents in older buildings

Center City District's new report confirms what many people have observed anecdotally from reading the real estate blogs, or just walking around the city - Philadelphia has been building a whole lot of new housing.

But simply observing that we've been building a lot of housing doesn't tell us whether we've been building enough housing to keep the city affordable. This quote from Paul Levy at the Philadelphia Real Estate Blog puts the issue in perspective:

He also noted that “if we had more robust job growth, some developers who are now building apartments would be building office buildings. But the number of people who will be moving into the new Comcast tower could fill all the new apartments being built.”


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