Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fill This Front: 13th and Spruce

1300 Spruce Street

            Well, its about fucking time that this place became available to lease! Despite what people may tell you, this awesome location at the corner of 13th and Spruce has NEVER had a retail/restaurant space on its ground floor. Now that it finally has one (and a front door), let's get this crazy sucker filled.
            This space is the first floor of a building composed of some combined buildings that started construction in the early 19th Century. Additions were later built connecting 1300 Spruce to 300 South 13th by the 1890s, when Dr. William Hunt lived there. A little over 100 years ago, the Civic Club of Philadelphia (a club that advocated for women's rights and interests) and the College Club (a club for women that had just finished college that had a lot of the same members) pooled their resources to create a common clubhouse with this property, much improved over the couple of rooms in members' houses they had been using up to that point.
            Everyone started calling the building "the Civic Club" even though a whole bunch of other clubs started using the building as well. By the 1940s, the building was fully owned and utilized by the Locust Mid-City Club (later Locust Club), a mercantile club that people used to call the "Jewish Union League". They had been meeting at 1300 Spruce since 1921. In 1960, they put the place up for sale and in 1961 moved to the 1600 block of Locust, which must have been nice. After all, after 40 years of being called the "Locust Club", they finally got to be on Locust Street.
          After the move, the place came under the ownership of the International Institute, a non-profit that assisted immigrants and refugees. They changed their name to the Nationalities Resource Center in 1963 and then spent the next 4 decades located at 1300 Spruce.

           In 2006, probably taking advantage of the increase in property values in the neighborhood at the time, they put the place up for sale and moved out to the old Young, Smyth, and Field Building at 1216 Arch Street. In July 2007 Hartford Omega LLC, a Hartford, CT-based apartment operator, bought the place for $1.575 million and had Alesker and Dundon architects put together a plan to turn it into residential with retail on the first floor.
           For some reason or another, it never got done. They put the property back up for sale in 2009. In July 2011, Coneast Properties out of Great Neck, NY bought 1300 Spruce for $1.25 million and came up with their own residential-with-retail plan under the designs of Frank Kakos. A couple of years went by until the renovation started, but now seems to be complete. The biggest change to the building, of course, was the restoration of its front door, something it hasn't had in over 100 years. Now its time to get this thing filled.
Bluepring from the Michael Salove Company, who is managing the space
                This is the 4,000 square foot retail space (and basement) at 1300 Spruce Street, located in the Midtown Village/Gayborhood section of Washington Square West. It comes with an entrance on Spruce Street, an accessible entrance from 13th Street, an outdoor courtyard section, and parking spaces off of Cypress Street in back. Its location is awesome and can be the catalyst that brings the 13th Street shopping/restaurant district of Midtown Village further south, connecting it with both the retail area of 13th Street that is centered around 13th/Pine and the mini-restaurant row along the 1200 and 1300 blocks of Spruce.
               The space is also easily accessible by non-auto-based options: A block from the Broad Street Line concourse and close to several bus lines including the 23, the most heavily used in the system. Its also at the crossroads of two bike lanes! This is one of the most highly anticipated commercial spaces to come online in a long time. Throw your newest, coolest restaurant in here or think of any other use! The listing also shows a blueprint of how this place could be converted to medical offices!
             Ok, so the infamous Parker-Spruce is catercorner. Are you gonna let that stop you? The new cafe in the new building next to it is doing great!! The place is currently going for $25 per square foot per year, aka $100k/year. The place is fully sprinklered and just-renovated.
             Pick this place up while the gettin's good! Its time to FILL THIS FRONT!!!

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