This particular one will feature outdoor seating and a bicycle rack. It will renovate an old masonry structure, while removing a smaller structure which has outlived its materials. The curb cuts could use some fine tuning or elimination, and there could have been a smaller parking lot. The neighborhood is still battling the potential for carry out service for fear of a fast food joint. But at least it won’t be a future brownfield, and it will no longer house the large billboard.
As a frequent traveler down this street, I’ve noticed that there’s been more change happening in this stretch of College Avenue than I’ve ever seen in the past. Just in this small oblique photo from the zoning document, you can see 4 things that have changed in the past 4-5 years:
On the southwest corner, a beautiful old church was demolished recently:
On the Southeast, a unique 3 story multi-use building was also sadly demolished:
Meanwhile, on the northwest corner, the Gramse buildingÂ has been lovingly renovated, while there are even more renovations ongoing just out of view. One block south, the old elementary school has hope for renovation as housing:
At 24th and College, one of the more intriguing renovations is taking place, a pre-Prohibition-themed bar at a large commercial structure:
Hopefully the area is finished with demolishing great old buildings, but that remains to be seen. The commercial structure at 27th and College appears vacant with little activity. There are other places that could be lost with more years of neglect, but the list of significant historic mixed use structures has dwindled down to just a few. Almost everything else will either be a house or apartment renovation, or new construction.
So, what’s next? The proposed Red Line rapid transit plan does not travel down this section of College, for better or worse. Instead, this section will be connected to West 38th Street and Lafayette Square. King Park is a part of the Smart Growth district, which would connect with the proposed Green Line. For now, this neighborhood is less likely to be the beneficiary of concentrated high dollar investment. It may see more of the targeted renovations that have been occurring, thanks in large part to the King Park CDC.
Note: Thanks to Chris Corr for his help with the writing and information on this post.