Lower North Philadelphia Views, 51-75

This is the third of four posts, presenting another 25 pictures of North Philadelphia captured while walking Katie dog.

Autumn

Due to the noticeable absence of trees – some blocks with none – fall passed almost imperceptibly into winter.  The Street Trees program aims to green the city with its free trees program.

Autumn

Doorway

Places evolve under multiple forces and as sums of their parts. This back alley canvas is one among many on a block that is quickly redeveloping to meet market demands.

Doorway

Store front

Looking back from a future point in time, Ridge Ave will have transformed between 2015 – 2025. Until then, there is this, here and there. The contrasts between derelict and new are remarkable.

StoreFront

Reflection

The restoration of the Divine Lorraine hotel carries forward an historic landmark into an uncertain but – more than likely – vibrant future. There is no shortage of Blumenfeld vision and Procida capital.

Reflection

Philly Mural Arts

Since 1986, the program has produced a stupendous collection of art pieces.  Here, Celebrate Poetry enlivens a dead space between two hibernating buildings. Check out this map of murals that populate every nook and cranny of the city.

PhillyMuralArts

Autumnal Evening

Open for all as long as light and weather permits, tax dollars for civic infrastructure provide the universally appreciated and egalitarian city spaces. A city of brotherly love vibe, absolutely.

AutumnalEvening

Stylin Chrysler

Cars are pride points, in this neighborhood is no exception.

StylinChrysler

Sign

Part way removed, a clean up and change of use are underway.  The Pyramid Temple #1, a civic organization, continues to hold an annual ball in support of its charity mission.

Signs

Open Door

Previously noted, houses of worship are omnipresent. Holy Temple Church’s door is open late, serving the diverse needs and preferences of the community.

OpenDoor

Community Garden

Just south of Fairmont, the neighborhood home prices are higher than north of Girard, by a factor of three. Instead of vacant lots, there are amenities, like the remarkable Spring Gardens community garden.

CommunityGarden

Gate

Right center, the private Gesu School is “a national model for inner-city education” in a community that benefits greatly from its work.

Gate

Transit

About a mile south, Penn Center Suburban Station provides a transit hub for subway, trolley, and train lines. It is a stupendous example of art deco architecture, as well.

Transit

New Mags

Representative of gloss over substance or, conversely, the suitability of old things made to last. This classic, sanded down to the metal, sports a new set of wheels.

NewMags

Civic Architecture

Formerly the Berean Institute, founded to provide professional training programs that were not available to blacks, it is now the Philadelphia Technical Training Institute, which is doing much the same thing, more than a 100 years later. Check out this long and windy history of the Berean Institute.

CivicArchitecture

Demolition

One stage in the redevelopment process. Very close to Girard, on Ridge, this is the first of the many on this block that could turn things around.

Demolition

One block off broad

Once part of the rattle and hum of Philadelphia, this area’s pulse is barely perceptible. Zuzu’s Kitchen and Lorraine, with its solid neighborhood grit and great outdoor seating, are among the few restaurants and bars scattered about and drawing traffic.

BlockOffBroad

School View

Monday through Friday, the streets are flooded with students in parochial school outfits. Students from Jersey and outlying areas bus or drive in to St. Joe’s Prep, completely incongruent with what surrounds it.

SchoolView

City Housing

This Project HOME site in a vital resource for addressing poverty and homelessness in this North Philadelphia neighborhood.

CityHousing

Opening Hour

Established in 1956, likely the zenith of the neighborhood’s 20th century development, Yellow Front remains as a solid step up from the average corner store. Not a great place to get your perishables, it has a voluminous stock of hot sauce and good selection of rices.

OpeningHour

Laundromat

Top of the list of places I like to avoid, laundromats are the most common business after bodegas, barber shops, Chinese takeout, and bars. This place ranks.

Laundermat

Dog Park

Reflecting the amenity demands of more recent arrivals, this slice of land has been claimed by neighborhood dog owners as a leash-free park.

DogPark

No parking

Lew Blum, free signs for service, is one of a couple shake-down outfits – more successful than the PD – keeping car owners from wreaking havoc on the streets and off. One fun to read story, among many (image captured using a Nikon D90).

NoParking

Tree & Scaffold

Building sides are clean canvases for crisp shadows. Here, a dense cluster of new construction 3 per unit condominiums.

TreeScaffold

Barber Shop

Another neighborhood essential, the barber shop. Bill’s is looking for a suitor for this narrow corner building. A short block off Ridge, across from a park, it is a good buy.

BarberShop

School Doors

Many of the early 20th century public school buildings have been sold and converted to other uses. The Helen Fleisher Vocation School, now the Parkway Center City college prep school, built in the Academic Gothic style, remains in the public school system.

SchoolDoors

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