Philadelphia gets $2 million to turn old 40-acre arsenal into mixed-use plus $1 million to turn old concrete factory into public park

On December 29, 2020, two large redevelopment projects in Northeast Philadelphia received a total of $3 million under the state’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program.

$2 million is being awarded to Arsenal Associates to assist in its plan to revitalize a blighted 40 acres of the former Frankford Arsenal and create a modern, mixed-use community to include multi-tenant offices and manufacturing buildings.

This grant will help our local economy by providing hundreds of family sustaining jobs, not just during construction but also after completion,” Rep. Joe Hohenstein said.

Improvements to our historic arsenal will attract different types of businesses with capacity to support light manufacturing and industry. Our neighborhoods deserve to be a part of a diverse economy that provides real opportunity, and this project is an important step in that direction,” he added.

Image courtesy of Arsenal Associates.

According to Arsenal Associates, the revitalization plan includes retaining 494 jobs, which is estimated to increase to 790 jobs with the $2 million RACP grant.

These projected new jobs are on top of the hundreds of construction and related jobs that will be created for local construction workers, plumbers, painters, electricians, HVAC professionals, finishers and others,” Rep. Mike Driscoll said. “These are life-changing projects for working families and for our community.

The goal of this Rehabilitation Project is to continue to rehabilitate buildings 110, 111, and 112 in the Arsenal into multi-tenant office, research and manufacturing buildings,” Senator John Sabatina (D-Philadelphia) said. “The buildings will be for local businesses to operate in a safe, secure, and cost-effective environment.

The construction work includes interior demolition, restoration and replacement of windows, roof repairs, plumbing upgrades, drywall installation, electrical installations, telephone system and other electronics, drop ceiling installation, HVAC, elevator upgrades, interior painting and other work.

The result will be job creation with both the construction work and the business space upon the project’s completion,” Sabatina added. “This is a welcomed boost to the local economy.

Hohenstein said the state also released $1 million to Riverfront North Partnership (formerly Delaware River City Corp.) to help move Phase 1 construction of the Bridesburg Riverfront Park project forward.

The funding is on top of a $340,000 state grant approved for the project earlier this month. Phase 1 includes site work, parking, landscaping, pathways, utilities and lighting, and a restroom building.

This new grant from the governor puts us one step closer to making waterfront access for Bridesburg and Port Richmond a reality,” Hohenstein continued. “When it is completed, the park will provide an important link in the chain for the East Coast Greenway. The Delaware River is part of our heritage, and now it will be a bigger part of our future.

We are grateful to our elected officials for their support of the new Bridesburg Riverfront Park as a neighborhood destination and a new waterfront amenity for Philadelphians,” said Stephanie Phillips, executive director of Riverfront North Partnership.

Design work on Bridesburg Riverfront Park began in 2015 and is the result of active community participation.

The former concrete factory at the intersection of Orthodox Street and Delaware Avenue is being developed into a 10-acre public riverfront park adjacent to the planned PennDOT Delaware Avenue Extension. Construction is expected to begin in 2021.

Featured photo of Frankford Arsenal courtesy Alliance Partners HSP.

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