Proposed apartments at 43rd and Baltimore: community meetings to begin Monday

May 17, 2013

The developers of the proposed residential building at 4224 Baltimore Avenue are seeking residents’ input on the project through a series of community engagement meetings, with the first one scheduled on Monday, May 20, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. at International House of Philadelphia (South America Room, 3701 Chestnut St). The goal of the meetings is to come up with alternative design plans for the proposed apartment complex to be built on the large vacant lot at the corner of 43rd and Baltimore.


Vacant lot at 43rd and Baltimore where the new apartment complex is proposed.

Clarkmore Group LLC, the property owner, has obtained a conditional zoning permit for the 92 residential unit building, six parking spaces and 36 bicycle parking spaces. The proposed plan had received mixed reviews from the community, including comments by West Philly Local readers after our first article on this subject.

Clarkmore Group LLC is working with the Spruce Hill Community Association, which will coordinate the community engagement process that will include three meetings in total (we’ll post more details about the other two meetings when this information is available). At the meetings, community members can learn more about the project, meet the project team and work with it on a number of focus areas, including the building design, transportation and retail mix.

More details on this project and its stakeholders are available here.

22 Comments For This Post

  1. brendangrad Says:

    92 units with just 6 parking spaces sounds like parking in the neighborhood will get that much more impossible.

  2. ihsanamin Says:

    Why are there more spots for bikes than cars? I feel like that area is going to become permit parking only soon, which sucks.

  3. ashley Says:

    If I was being honest, I’d say it is because bicycling is better for the city and the environment, and the apartment developers want to encourage it.

    If I was a cynic, I would say it is a gimmick to burnish their image in front of the zoning board.

  4. WIlliam Says:

    I’d much prefer difficult parking to another large parking lot and more single car drivers. Hopefully the limited parking will discourage people with cars from choosing this spot, and encourage more bikes and trolley use. Spruce Hill is designed such that car ownership is largely unnecessary.

  5. GoldenMonkey Says:

    So, you assumption is that everyone who lives in Spruce Hill never has to leave?

    I guess you’re right…I’ll just head over to the Spruce Hill nursery for the new plants for my yard. Then I’ll hit the Spruce Hill Target for sundry items. Finally I’ll visit the Spruce Hill Crate & Barrel for that new couch we need.

    Thanks William!

  6. ashley Says:

    If you love Target and Crate and Barrel so much, why are you in West Philly? Just move to Montgomery County already.

  7. GoldenMonkey Says:

    Zing! And a miss.

    I’m guessing you pocket mulch?

  8. GoldenMonkey Says:

    Oh, and to answer your question, I live in West Philly because I moved here 20 years ago, own a house off Clark Park, work in the area, have may friends here, and refuse to be cowed or coerced into thinking that I have to pretend that my life ends at the border of UCity.

    And you?

  9. Brandon Says:

    There are quality places to buy sundry items and furniture in West Philly. All accessible by trolley.

  10. J Says:


    Get yee one of those bikes with the fancy trailer jawn so you can take your pups too and from the ice cream shoppe.

    Anyone who says cars are unnecessary should also remember the meaning of that word. Don’t look now, but you’re not necessary either.

    Bikers and car drivers can and should be working together, not against each other.

  11. Trailer John Says:

    Zing and a miss to you, Golden Monkey, for the ridiculous notion that not having a car = one’s life ending at the border of UCity. That’s just a stupid rejoinder, really. Setting aside transit, obviously car share can take care of one’s plants, sundry items, even couches if one desires. Not suggesting everyone in the neighborhood should get rid of their cars – that’s not going to happen – but would like more people, perhaps, to realize that it’s feasible (depending on where one works, and obviously that’s a big consideration).
    As to J – forgive me if I’m misreading you, but the idea that bike trailers (a) come with the bike and (b) exist only to ferry one’s pups to the ice cream shoppe is amusing. Trailer is my car: two kids to school/daycare daily, groceries & other errands on the weekends. And yes, I realize that, in the cosmic sense, I am not necessary.

  12. GoldenMonkey Says:

    “(depending on where one works, and obviously that’s a big consideration).”

    Can’t you just get car share to drive to KoP every day? That way the streets are free of those pesky personal cars. We’ll just section off every normal spot for for-profit multi-national rental agencies and out of site commuters who use UCity as their own personal parking lot as they shuffle down Spruce to Penn and HUP.

  13. Brandon Says:

    I work in Montco, live in UCity, and get by without a car. I guess it’s possible, huh?

  14. OH NO IS THAT A CAR!!!! Says:

    Is there ever going to be a time when these conversations don’t devolve into bikes vs. cars? I have both and enjoy both, recreationally and practically speaking… ugh, this one has been beat to death for centuries. In short, the plan should include some sort of parking, but no one wants a high rise parking garage, right? You can’t have it all and you can’t always have it your way. NIMBYism is strong here in U. City (Don’t you dare act this this is a west philly issue, because it’s not)

  15. marb Says:

    What no one wants (hopefully) is a giant surface lot because some neighbors demanded that a developer subsidize their convenient and free street parking in the middle of the nation’s 5th largest city.

  16. Anonymous Says:

    Agree with most of your comment but having attending the Apple Lofts zoning meeting, your last sentence is tragic and hilarious. Tragilarious. NIMBYism is universal but some communities get more opportunities to express it than others…

  17. Oh No, more cars Says:

    Brandon, that’s awesome. I’m glad that you are in a spot where that can work for you. Unfortunately, we don’t all have your standards for wants vs. needs. I want my car, I love it, I love getting in it whenever the heck I want and going to visit family, the grocery store, hell, I even like go for pleasure rides (gasp! how dare you!). It’s nice, so I want it. And I’m going to keep it. And if that makes you upset or makes you feel like you’re a better person, that’s cool too. We enjoy the luxury of living in a very large city and having free street parking. We also have a super low tax base and a bunch of failing schools. These apt’s bring in some much needed tax dollars, even if it is just in the form of folks paying their sales tax on coffee at the Green Line. If their plan for the new building includes parking, than so be it. The folks coming to rent those apt’s, might just be the same folks who can afford to have a car. Sounds like a win-win for you. Improved local tax intake -> schools and resources; Their presence won’t affect your ace parking spot.

  18. Brandon Says:

    I think you misinterpreted my comments. I think it’s fine you have a car. I have friends who have cars and I use car share from time to time. I don’t think I’m better than you at all. I also 100% support this development and the tax dollars that it will bring in, off-street parking or not. My problem is with commenters who are complaining about the density and lack of parking attached to the project in the middle of one of the biggest cities in the U.S.

    If the developer wants to provide parking then that’s great, it’s their property. But the conditional use approval only calls for six spaces and I think that is plenty. There is no shortage of street parking in our corner of West Philly. There are always a couple of parking spots available right on my block. I would hate to see a great project derailed by neighbors who want the developer to provide 100+ parking spaces.

    One day I might decide that I want to own a car, but when that day comes I will not complain about having to walk a few blocks to my parking spot on the street in a city of 1.5 million people.

  19. murray dubin Says:

    my wife and i have lived in Spruce hill since 1973, and have raised two children here. We’d want to downsize from our large and vertical house, and stay in the neighborhood. So what we would like to see are some two and three-bedroom condos, perhaps 2,500 square feet or more. build that, make it nice, and we’re there.

  20. mary Says:

    Murray, I absolutely agree! It would be so great for the neighborhood if you and your wife could stay here into your golden years. My parents only relinquished their UC home of 46 years when a bad hip and weak heart made the stairs too difficult. Clearly, condos are the best choice for developing that property and that’s what the neighborhood should fight for – all other considerations of parking, retail, green space, etc. should follow from that.

  21. murray dubin Says:

    thanks for agreeing with my point of view. one request, however: please do not combine “golden years” and my name in the same sentence again.

  22. mary Says:

    My apologies, Murray! From now on I will refer to you as “that young whippersnapper”!

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