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Construction on Trolley Portal Gardens begins near 40th and Baltimore

Posted on 27 June 2017

The much anticipated construction of Trolley Portal Gardens, the project that will include a remodeled 40th Street Trolley portal, a public space and a restaurant, has begun. Philadelphia general contractor Domus will begin excavating the building foundation as early as the end of this week, according to Chris Richman, Communication Manager for University City District.

The work will spread to a larger area, called “the apron,” after the Trolley Tunnel Blitz concludes in mid-July.

The groundbreaking ceremony for Trolley Portal Gardens was held in December 2016, but it took some time to obtain necessary building permits. The last remaining permits were finalized earlier this month, according to the project website

At the center of the project, spearheaded by University City District, is a two-story restaurant, called Trolley Car Station. It will be built in the grassy area bordering the portal along Baltimore Avenue. A company owned by real estate developer Ken Weinstein, which runs the Trolley Car Diner in Mount Airy, will operate the restaurant.

The construction of the new restaurant and public space will take approximately 10 months, during which trolley service and pedestrian access to the portal will not be disrupted.

For more information, renderings and updates on the project, visit: http://www.universitycity.org/portalgardens.

Rendering of Trolley Car Station restaurant currently under construction near 40th and Baltimore.

5 Comments For This Post

  1. SB Says:

    Notice the first thing done is to remove three fine large trees. That pleasant green space along 39xx Baltimore is being traded for a restaurant. That’s NOT an improvement.

  2. Ann Dixon Says:

    Just because human beings didn’t enter the area where the trees were much, doesn’t mean that humans didn’t benefit from the pollution filtering and temperature control that the trees provided.

  3. TopArchitecht Says:

    This artistic rendering of the new fine dining bistro is absolutely stunning. From top to bottom, West Philly is getting a well needed makeover. Kudos!

  4. Emma Says:

    SB, the artist’s rendering shows multiple trees, three to be exact. I would think this will be a greener space than it was before.

  5. goldenmonkey Says:

    If only there was somewhere nearby with trees. A “Woodland” if you will.

    Or even on the other side of Baltimore.

    Nope, just more barren land for miles around.

    But that building does look like hot garbage.



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