Group plans 32-story tower to replace parking lot at 7th and Chestnut

A development partnership involving Parkway Corporation, the parking-garage company run by Joseph and Robert Zuritsky, is planning to replace a surface parking lot at 7th and Chestnut streets with a 32-story apartment tower, the Philadelphia Business Journal reported this morning.

The plans for 709 Chestnut Street—which a Parkway affiliate purchased for $3 in 2012, according to city records—call for 304 apartments and an automated parking garage for 125 cars.

The group recently made a preliminary presentation of the project to Washington Square West Civic Association, according to Ron Patterson, an attorney for the developers. They plan to apply for zoning variances—they’re seeking a dimensional variance in order to earn the floor-area-ratio bonus they’ll need to get to 32 stories—in the next few weeks.

The developers will also need Historical Commission Review, since part of the proposed tower overhangs a historic property. And, because of the size of the tower, the Civic Design Review Committee will also review the project. As a matter of interest to those concerned with the historic fabric of this part of Philadelphia, the Historical Commission’s Committee on Designation is Thursday hearing nominations from the Preservation Alliance of Greater Philadelphia for near neighbors of the proposed project. The properties being considered are  720-22, 721, 723 and 725 Chestnut Street.

Chestnut Street, as anyone who’s walked the corridor in the last year or so will have noticed, is popping. Four blocks east of the proposed Parkway project, the new Museum of the American Revolution is under construction. Four blocks west, Brickstone Realty is completing a major demolition-and-construction project that will result in more than 100 apartment units and retail spaces on the ground floor. West of Broad, the historic Boyd Theater is being demolished and will be replaced with a residential tower, a W Hotel is in the first stages of construction, and the Wendy’s on the corner at 15th has moved around the corner.

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