What Goes Up, What Comes Down

As East Falls loses the abandoned Japanese Restaurant building on Kelly Drive, nearby RAH watches luxury condos go up by Laurel Hill. 

Two big projects underway add to the hundreds of new luxury units coming to our area thanks to a recent surge in investors and interest. Missed the details? No worries, we’ll recap here with links to further reading.

Luxury Condos and Townhomes are coming up across from Laurel Hill, on North 34th Street — within sight of the Mills and New Courtland. This isn’t a gated community, but a mixed-use complex including 18,000 sq ft of retail/commercial space, almost 100k sq ft in condos, and 9 duplexes that open to the street. Projected price range starts around $250k/unit.

The developer (KCA Design Associates) is also building the neighborhood a rec center on an adjacent plot of land. Rose Cooper, president of the local neighbors’ association, announced at a recent meeting that already of the properties were sold before they were built.

On Kelly Drive, the old “Japanese Restaurant” has been demolished, clearing the way for a five-story building with 136 rental units plus roof deck with 2,500 – 5,000 sq ft of retail/commercial space.

The design received some push-back from EFDC’s design committee, as well as both EFCC and EFF, who all agree that the plans could use some tweaks. This Fall, the developer (Gary Jonas/HOW Properties) seemed very open to input from the community, but the design he provided for Philly’s Civic Design Review received a thumbs down for lack of connection with the community & the river.

Regardless, since CDR’s recommendation is just advisory, construction can begin asap. Meanwhile, Gary and his architects assure community leaders they will continue to work with neighbors to improve the final result.



    • Grasso’s in the financing stage & very optimistic about things coming together soon so building can begin. “Full steam ahead” was the quote we heard, although we are all waiting to hear/see something definite. Thanks for chiming in!

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