Campbell Thomas & Co.

Community & Transportation Planning

115 S. 21st Street, Philadelphia, PA

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Apartment Conversion from Offices

The owner/developer sought to recoup their significant investment by building out and managing luxury apartments in the higher rent Rittenhouse Square Historic District. Their aim was to submit for a 20% historic tax credit and get an exception to accessibility requirements to maximize repairs and fit-out. Repairs were needed for significant structure and water damage but in keeping with the historical nature and elements of the building. CT&C successfully argued building a second stair and ramp was technically infeasible and the Rittenhouse Square catchment area had numerous available accessible rentals already. Central to meeting the owner's goals was to design many smaller but quality units for their building. The design achieved 19 units with elevator access and high quality features. Each unit has tall ceilings and 8-foot tall doors. A preliminary plans review was submitted to the City near the very beginning to test some ideas such as using the existing outside fire escape as a second egress and putting apartments on five floors including the basement.

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