Last month, a graffiti-covered building at 3862 Lancaster Avenue was demolished to make way for a three-story, 22-unit apartment building to be developed by Turn Key Realty LLC, according to city records. The building sat vacant after its residents were evicted last December.
The building was formerly a venue and makeshift apartment for artists called the “Fake House.” It was first occupied by a group of artists in the late ‘80s, according to an article by Philadelphia Weekly, and had occupants and musical performances up until the evictions.
The building was known as Fake House because the word “Fake” was painted in large letters on the front of the building. Much of the graffiti on the building enforced its counter-culture reputation, as there were strong anti-gentrification and anti-corporate messages.
The occupants never signed a formal lease, and as one resident admitted to Philadelphia Weekly almost a decade ago, “We know we’re all this close to losing our space. Anything could change at any time.”
He was right, of course. But the fascinating and somewhat subversive alt/punk hub still got another decade under its belt. The final punk show took place just a week before the evictions.