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-   -   PHILADELPHIA | The Arthaus @ 311 S. Broad | 542 FT | 47 FLOORS (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum//showthread.php?t=208875)

Pennsgrant Dec 17, 2013 4:16 PM

PHILADELPHIA | The Arthaus @ 311 S. Broad | 542 FT | 47 FLOORS
 
Title: The Arthaus @ 311 S. Broad
Project: Residential, retail
Architect: Kohn Pederson Fox
Developer: Dranoff Properties
Location: Broad and Spruce Streets, Philadelphia, PA
Neighborhood: Avenue of the Arts
District: Center City
Floors: 47 floors
Height: 528 feet

https://www.inquirer.com/resizer/IKm...XNMFFZ3HFE.jpg

https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/iDct...2/arthaus2.jpg

http://www.philly.com/philly/classif...uth_Broad.html
http://dranoffproperties.com/places/...-philadelphia/

Flyers2001 Dec 17, 2013 4:25 PM

I have full faith in Dranoff getting this tower done. Its a much better design than his last South Broad project.

I am also excited about what this can mean in the future of South Broad development.

Great News!

PHL10 Dec 17, 2013 4:42 PM

Love it! This is the perfect location for this type of project.

I suppose it’s not crucial but does anyone have any opinions about the tower seemingly being on the former Cypress street side of the project instead of at the corner of Broad and Spruce?

summersm343 Dec 17, 2013 4:45 PM

Awesome! Last I heard this was 40 floors and wouldn't break the 500 foot mark. This is great news for South Broad! This will take 3 derelict properties out and replace it with a shiny new tower.

Here is a bigger pic, I like the tower design a lot but the base is meh at best:

http://media.philly.com/images/20131217_dran_768.jpg

summersm343 Dec 17, 2013 4:49 PM

Another article on this from Curbed Philly

http://philly.curbed.com/archives/20...ondo-tower.php

Flyers2001 Dec 17, 2013 4:56 PM

I am curious to see what the base turns out to be. It will have 2 lobbies, street retail as well as the job of hiding the 3 floors of above ground parking.

From my understanding they are attempting to remove the "ally"?

Pennsgrant Dec 17, 2013 4:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by summersm343 (Post 6377083)
Awesome! Last I heard this was 40 floors and wouldn't break the 500 foot mark. This is great news for South Broad! This will take 3 derelict properties out and replace it with a shiny new tower.

Here is a bigger pic, I like the tower design a lot but the base is meh at best

Yes should be noted that this location will replace a building that housed Philadelphia International Records- abandoned and damaged heavily by a fire a few years ago.

This tower is bit edgier than your normal Center City development. Stepping up.

christof Dec 17, 2013 5:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pennsgrant (Post 6377111)
Yes should be noted that this location will replace a building that housed Philadelphia International Records- abandoned and damaged heavily by a fire a few years ago.

This tower is bit edgier than your normal Center City development. Stepping up.

What are the odds that this baby gets built?

Parkway Dec 17, 2013 6:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by christof (Post 6377152)
What are the odds that this baby gets built?

It sounds like he has funding lined up and he stated that zoning is on the "3 yard line" so I would put it at 90% given his past track record. The only thing that could derail this seems like an Old City esque NIMBY storm.

summersm343 Dec 17, 2013 8:28 PM

http://hiddencityphila.org/wp-conten...ls_aerial1.jpg

http://hiddencityphila.org/2013/12/d...-official-now/

summersm343 Dec 17, 2013 8:44 PM

Another article on this

http://www.bizjournals.com/philadelp...-47-story.html

summersm343 Dec 17, 2013 8:55 PM

More images from Giovanni Sasso

http://hiddencityphila.org/wp-conten...national_1.jpg

http://hiddencityphila.org/wp-conten...2/sls_day1.jpg

SJPhillyBoy Dec 17, 2013 10:54 PM

Very nice tower. Pretty sharp design. Amazing 562 foot addition to South Broad (along with the W/Element Tower at 550+ feet). Driving up the Avenue of the Arts from the Stadium Complex just got more interesting. This will impact the view from the East.

https://d1embwjxo27ph2.cloudfront.ne...181001_WEB.jpg

https://d1embwjxo27ph2.cloudfront.ne...te-Cochere.jpg

https://d1embwjxo27ph2.cloudfront.ne...Greenhouse.jpg

https://d1embwjxo27ph2.cloudfront.ne...iving-Room.jpg

https://d1embwjxo27ph2.cloudfront.ne...w-5_181001.jpg

Image Credit: KPF https://www.kpf.com/projects/311-south-broad-street

duffey Dec 18, 2013 5:07 AM

question: why do renderings of towers from the ground angle tend to show skewed perspective. last i checked in art class, lines get closer to one another as they approach the vanishing point (in this case the sky). the top of this tower looks wider than the base.

Aaamazarite Dec 18, 2013 2:04 PM

...and of course an openly corrupt Councilman is already trying to kill it

http://www.philly.com/philly/busines...otel_plan.html

Flyers2001 Dec 18, 2013 2:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aaamazarite (Post 6378174)
...and of course an openly corrupt Councilman is already trying to kill it

http://www.philly.com/philly/busines...otel_plan.html

What a clown. Goode like many Philly politicians are so short sighted with their objectives, unless of course they benefit personally. If Goode is so hell bent on "taxes" he should be focused on the millions that are outstanding vs. the first 10 years of a project that will produce positive gains for the city even before the tower is finished.

christof Dec 18, 2013 3:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Flyers2001 (Post 6378195)
What a clown. Goode like many Philly politicians are so short sighted with their objectives, unless of course they benefit personally. If Goode is so hell bent on "taxes" he should be focused on the millions that are outstanding vs. the first 10 years of a project that will produce positive gains for the city even before the tower is finished.

This is why I asked what are the odds that this thing gets built. It sounded too good to be true. And the haters are already out, trying to kill it...

Philly Kid Dec 18, 2013 3:59 PM

I'm almost positive that Goode does not have near enough support in Council to even bring this to a vote...and if he did it would be rejected overwhelmingly thank god. This is his schtick and it seems like he does this just to be heard and make a name for himself...I don't think there's too much to worry about here.

summersm343 Dec 18, 2013 4:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by christof (Post 6378245)
This is why I asked what are the odds that this thing gets built. It sounded too good to be true. And the haters are already out, trying to kill it...

No need to be negative. Goode seems to be the only one out against this project. The rest of city council seems in full support of it.

BenKatzPhillytoParis Dec 18, 2013 4:26 PM

Whooaaah slow it down.

1) Not that dramatic. Councilman Goode has consistently been in the minority on this issue and there's no evidence it will be any different this time.

2) While I disagree with him here, he's not corrupt. He's one of the only councilpeople who actually make probitive analyses of these issues. And even though I think there's room for public subsidies here due to the economic benefits and wanting to see this built, there are many valid, compelling arguments for skepticism of these giveaways.

3) Philadelphia improved its delinquent tax collection dramatically this past year. It was in plan philly the other day.

Perhaps it would be better not to jump on these kinds of news items as dramatically and pessimistically...

bywoods Dec 18, 2013 4:35 PM

I know this is a controversial topic and my opinion won't win any friends on this forum, but I think Goode has a point here. Yes philly has high construction costs and relatively low rents, and the tax abatement program has definitely helped spur development. Yes, city government is corrupt and should do a better job collecting taxes from slumlords. On the other hand Dranoff has implied he will try to sell his new condos for a similar price as Ten Rittenhouse, which is $1000/sqft. A tax abatement is generally good policy, but having it cover virtually all the real estate taxes for a full ten years for incredibly expensive property that can only be afforded by the richest people in Philly, I think it is just too much. I'm sure most of the owners here will continue to pay taxes to Lower Merion on their other home on the Main Line.

Anyone who can afford to live here can easily afford to also pay some real estate taxes to help their community pay its bills and keep the schools open

Flyers2001 Dec 18, 2013 4:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BenKatzPhillytoParis (Post 6378309)
Whooaaah slow it down.

1) Not that dramatic. Councilman Goode has consistently been in the minority on this issue and there's no evidence it will be any different this time.

2) While I disagree with him here, he's not corrupt. He's one of the only councilpeople who actually make probitive analyses of these issues. And even though I think there's room for public subsidies here due to the economic benefits and wanting to see this built, there are many valid, compelling arguments for skepticism of these giveaways.

3) Philadelphia improved its delinquent tax collection dramatically this past year. It was in plan philly the other day.

Perhaps it would be better not to jump on these kinds of news items as dramatically and pessimistically...

While I am glad to hear delinquent tax collection is up, Goode Jr. will always be remembered to me with, "Don't you ever disrespect a black woman that way!"

Pennsgrant Dec 18, 2013 4:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bywoods (Post 6378329)
I know this is a controversial topic and my opinion won't win any friends on this forum, but I think Goode has a point here. Yes philly has high construction costs and relatively low rents, and the tax abatement program has definitely helped spur development....

Anyone who can afford to live here can easily afford to also pay some real estate taxes to help their community pay its bills and keep the schools open


Bottom line . No tax abatements then No Center City residential renaissance. No Ten Rittenhouse, No 1706 Rittenhouse ,No Graduate Hospital resurgence, perhaps No Granary,No 2116 Chestnut,No SLS International announcement. Center City and Philadelphia would be a much lesser place without these property tax abatements.


If Goode was in control. Center City would be a shell of its current self and the schools would still be fractured,broken and underfunded. At least the tax abatements bring wealthy residents into the city where their wage taxes and ancillary spending will contribute to the tax coffers.

The 10 year property tax abatement is the least this city can do to help new residents deal with the nightmare that is the public schools and Goode and Blackwell's surrounding hoods.

CentralGrad258 Dec 18, 2013 4:56 PM

It's all posturing, just like the W got its Tax increment financing, so will Dranoff get some kind of a sweetener for sure. It's a beautiful project and as a fan of the Philly skyline I hope it gets built, but the tax abatement issue is not so cut and dry. How many additional tax breaks to the wealthy condo buyers, developers and hotel guests really need?

Flyers2001 Dec 18, 2013 5:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CentralGrad258 (Post 6378354)
It's all posturing, just like the W got its Tax increment financing, so will Dranoff get some kind of a sweetener for sure. It's a beautiful project and as a fan of the Philly skyline I hope it gets built, but the tax abatement issue is not so cut and dry. How many additional tax breaks to the wealthy condo buyers, developers and hotel guests really need?

The tax abatement is not new, it has been here for years now and has been a positive element for growth as Pennsgrant mentioned. Goode is setting this issue up for his own name and future considerations as in a fight with Comcast and its abatement's for when their new tower is announced.

Again its shortsighted. The "wealthy condo buyers, developers and hotel guest" all pay taxes multiple other ways. They argument is whether they would even be here without the help/intrigue of an abatement. The shortsightedness comes from not realizing abatement's don't last for ever and Philly would benefit much better in the long run.

BenKatzPhillytoParis Dec 18, 2013 5:31 PM

Problem is there is virtually no statistically valid evidence that the abatements are necessary to induce the new residents. Of course developers act like getting rid of them would be catastrophic, but their point of view is completely biased.

I think there should be more study before getting rid of them since they could indeed be having an effect that's worth the expense. But it really needs to be up for debate because we're potentially losing a huge amount that could be invested in our underfunded school, transportation, and parks systems and there's never been a rigorous cost-benefit analysis. It's complete speculation that the abatements have been worth the cost.

BenKatzPhillytoParis Dec 18, 2013 5:32 PM

Btw, high-quality schools, transportation, and parks also attract residents ;)

Pennsgrant Dec 18, 2013 5:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BenKatzPhillytoParis (Post 6378390)
Problem is there is virtually no statistically valid evidence that the abatements are necessary to induce the new residents.

The "past" is all the statistical evidence you need regarding this issue.

Pre Tax abatements - residential development in Center City and Philadelphia was almost non existent.

Post Tax abatements- Residential development in Center City and Philadlephia has skyrocketed.

I'm sure there are plenty of housing records to verify this.

BenKatzPhillytoParis Dec 18, 2013 6:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pennsgrant (Post 6378435)
The "past" is all the statistical evidence you need regarding this issue.

Pre Tax abatements - residential development in Center City and Philadelphia was almost non existent.

Post Tax abatements- Residential development in Center City and Philadlephia has skyrocketed.

I'm sure there are plenty of housing records to verify this.

That is correlative, not causative. There are other important factors that must be accounted for that are causing people to move to the city. To determine the value of the abatement, we need to know the its share of all the factors influencing people to move to Philly. Making tax policy without that information is amateurish at best, and a serious waste of resources at worst.

PHL10 Dec 18, 2013 6:17 PM

Would a $500,000 condo entice you more if the taxes were $100 rather than $10,000 per annum?

I suppose the only way to conduct the study is to interview the people who purchase these homes and ask them if they would have done so without the abatement. I’m sure at the least, it would have decreased their budget as most people look at the monthly payment rather than the total debt they are incurring. Remember that due to the incredible construction costs in this city, you can’t sell condos in a new construction building for $250k and make money. The tax incentive can make or break the deal for a homebuyer and by extension, the builder.

Flyers2001 Dec 18, 2013 6:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BenKatzPhillytoParis (Post 6378392)
Btw, high-quality schools, transportation, and parks also attract residents ;)

All that you mentioned could be fixed/funded with cutting the extra fat that the City government has put on in the past 10-15 years.

So in this case you can keep the abatement's and fix the attractions you mentioned! Happy happy joy joy!

MikeNigh Dec 18, 2013 7:03 PM

I think the abatement makes sense. He is redefining that area and the residents of the building should have a break until development around it catches up.

To my understanding abatements are for those to not get penalized for upgrading something which is exactly what is happening to the area.

summersm343 Dec 18, 2013 8:03 PM

Wilson Goode is in the minority here. The majority of City Council is in favor of the project. Anything Goode proposes will never even make it to a vote... not enough support. This is the same thing that happened with the W Hotel, and City Council pretty much unanimously passed the TIF. SLS International is 95% privately funded, the city would be moronic not to allow a tax abatement for the project that will bring hundreds of tax paying residents and thousands of tourists a year and create several hundred jobs. You would rather let the properties remain as is? Two empty buildings and an empty lot that generate not even 1/16th what the new building would generate in taxes? But they pay property taxes and have no abatement! Where the new building will have an abatement! Yes, but the new building will bring so much more in tax revenue from residents, jobs and tourists.

People in this city can be so shortsighted.

Will City council deny the development a tax abatement? I think not. City Council isn't THAT moronic.

MSFHQ Dec 18, 2013 8:39 PM

I'll never understand the issue against abatement. As if CC residents don't pay wage tax, sales tax, fuel businesses, etc. Nothing like penny wise, pound foolish. And that isn't even looking at the benefits of new, clean and shinny construction on this city.

People don't send their kids to Philly schools because they are unsafe, not underfunded. Philly needs an influx of moderately priced private schools for CC residents to send their kids.

UCityGardener Dec 18, 2013 9:32 PM

If I understand the abatement correctly, taxes are paid on a new or improved property based on the pre-improved assessment of the land/property. So in a simple example, if a plot of land that was paying $1,000 a year in property taxes has 10 condos built on it, that $1,000 would be divided among the 10 units – so in a simple breakdown, each condo owner would pay $100 for 10 years. After that, each unit would pay whatever the improved property assesses at. So no revenue is lost in the 10 years of the abatement.

There is no evidence that new buyers will flee the city once their taxes rise at the expiration of the abatement. In fact, population trends support the idea that population will increase as a result of the improved safety and quality of life that comes from a densely populated city. The 1st abatements expired in the late 2000s and the city’s population has been steadily increasing almost in lock-step with those expirations.

So… no lost revenue, improved quality of life, and an apparent population increase of high wage earners in the areas most impacted by the abatement. These all sound like arguments to keep the abatement, while arguments against it largely sound like sour grapes.

CentralGrad258 Dec 18, 2013 11:42 PM

I really hate to turn this into a pro-abatement vs anti-abatement arguments, because this project is awesome and I hope it gets built. However, if since we're there now, I think the pro-abatement side is not looking at the issue critically, simply by parroting the developers talking points. To act as if nobody would be moving to Philly if not for abatements does not stand up to close scrutiny-

a.) It completely ignores the fact that downtown living has seen a major boost across the entire country. Every single city has seen its downtown population boom and to pretend that Philly would have missed out on the trend, had it not been for abatement is a serious reach.

b.) Assuming the demand for downtown living is there, would paying real estate taxes diminish the demand or constrain the supply? Maybe in some marginal cases, but developers build where there's demand. Their profit margins might suffer and maybe a project here or there doesn't get built, but if the wealthy want to live downtown, someone will be more than happy to build a property for them.

c.) Philly real estate taxes are substantially lower than the surrounding counties. Even after AVI, you're likely paying twice as much for equivalent property value in the burbs than in the city.

Again, the developers love abatements. They don't have to pay property tax while the property sits, and can charge higher amounts, knowing that the new owners monthly mortgage payments would still be lower due to them not paying real estate taxes. The fact that the properties coming off abatement haven't resulted in a sudden outflows of residents proves that abatements are not longer necessary, to attract development imo. Maybe in the 90s when the legislation was being considered it did make some sense. At this point, not really.

Also, one last thing. If the abatement is really about dealing with the high cost of construction, then you know that's just code for unions. Maybe, just maybe working with developers to find alternatives to hiring building trades contractors for every project could help lower costs of projects, instead of taking money out of city and school district coffers.

MSFHQ Dec 19, 2013 12:07 AM

You get a lot more in the suburbs than you do in Philadelphia. Imagine paying Radnor property taxes and having the schools you have in Philly? Also, Philadelphia hasn't exactly seen a population boom. Yes, more people are moving to the city, but Philadelphia has a relatively bad rap to outsiders.

The lower property tax also ignores the fact that you get nailed for 4% just by living in the city.

I don't see much hard fact refuting. Only other side talking points. IMO, anything that entices developers to build in Philly is a good thing. This city needs continual gentrification to truly entice people. I live in the nice part of the city and it can turn into a dump real fast. Even if removing the abatement would only SLIGHTLY slow down development that is far too much.

I just can't see any good reason to remove it. If Philly wants more tax revenue they should go after the delinquent properties they already have. That or provide a pro business/pro development environment to entice more businesses and professionals to live in the city, thereby feeding the coffers though wage tax (another abomination) and sales tax.

BenKatzPhillytoParis Dec 19, 2013 8:59 AM

These are all issues but we still don't know the precise role abatements are playing, partly because we don't know what the price elasticity of demand for housing is in Philadelphia. There is inevitably an optimal point at which to set the abatement to maximize the combination of current and future revenue and the benefits of population growth. To have an abatement instead of a discounted tax rate, and at 10 years instead of any other year is arbitrary. We shouldn't be making public policy on such a flimsy basis. Let's at least get some better data to make the most informed policy choices possible.

hammersklavier Dec 19, 2013 4:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BenKatzPhillytoParis (Post 6378390)
Problem is there is virtually no statistically valid evidence that the abatements are necessary to induce the new residents. Of course developers act like getting rid of them would be catastrophic, but their point of view is completely biased.

I think there should be more study before getting rid of them since they could indeed be having an effect that's worth the expense. But it really needs to be up for debate because we're potentially losing a huge amount that could be invested in our underfunded school, transportation, and parks systems and there's never been a rigorous cost-benefit analysis. It's complete speculation that the abatements have been worth the cost.

I'm pretty sure Econsult did a study on this not so long ago and found some impressive quantifications of the abatement program.

apetrella802 Dec 19, 2013 9:17 PM

tax
 
the more you tax something the less you get it and visa versa

philadelphiathrives Dec 20, 2013 7:05 AM

Councilman Goode's position
 
I think some people are misrepresenting Councilman Goode's position on this project. In no way is he trying to "kill" this development, he's just very skeptical that the tax abatement is necessary to build it and is understandably concerned about funding the city's schools (and it would be more lucrative for him, and his campaign, to side with the wealthy developers than the poor community groups).

Developers are always going to whine that they absolutely need tax breaks, less regulation, and just can't afford union labor, no matter how rich they are or how much money they are making from this city. I think the Councilman has a legitimate point to question whether these abatements are really necessary to build these developments. :shrug:

I think the argument that the Center City boom wouldn't have occurred without the tax abatement is as short-sighted (and as anti-urban) as it comes, since it completely ignores the city's many advantages, such as culture, walkable shopping and restaurants, nightlife, entertainment, mass transit, easy access to jobs, manicured parks, abundant public art, beautiful architecture, important events, constant festivals, trendy neighborhoods, art galleries, progressive environment, and diversity (which some rich people consider to be a good thing), as well as the national trend towards living in dense cities :D . Their argument is the usual argument that giving rich people more money is the only way for the city to prosper, and that tax breaks are soooo necessary to attract rich people to the city (cause why would they want to live in Philadelphia otherwise :???: ), and that these rich people will provide enough tax revenue to fund the schools, even though many of them find all sorts of tricks to avoid paying other, and sometimes any, taxes to the city. :sly:

MSFHQ Dec 20, 2013 3:20 PM

All I know is I hope for Philly's sake that this build up and gentrification doesn't stop. The city needs another decade of CC cleaning up for sure. If this can be done without tax abatements, fine.

And if we stop these abatements how about we spend the increased revenue on something other than schools. Philadelphia schools are bad because of unruly kids and violence. If you want to invest in police and security fine, but this idea that buying newer text books or Mac computers is what will solve the problem is completely off base.

And this isn't a "giving rich people money" argument. It is making owning a condo or home in the city enticing when you have a ton of other option. Philly doesn't get its tax base from Kensington, it gets it from center city residents and businesses.

relnahe Dec 20, 2013 5:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MSFHQ (Post 6378926)
You get a lot more in the suburbs than you do in Philadelphia. Imagine paying Radnor property taxes and having the schools you have in Philly? Also, Philadelphia hasn't exactly seen a population boom. Yes, more people are moving to the city, but Philadelphia has a relatively bad rap to outsiders.

The lower property tax also ignores the fact that you get nailed for 4% just by living in the city.

I don't see much hard fact refuting. Only other side talking points. IMO, anything that entices developers to build in Philly is a good thing. This city needs continual gentrification to truly entice people. I live in the nice part of the city and it can turn into a dump real fast. Even if removing the abatement would only SLIGHTLY slow down development that is far too much.

I just can't see any good reason to remove it. If Philly wants more tax revenue they should go after the delinquent properties they already have. That or provide a pro business/pro development environment to entice more businesses and professionals to live in the city, thereby feeding the coffers though wage tax (another abomination) and sales tax.

Haha! Wrong! Philadelphia grew by nearly 100,000 people over the last 7 years. Do you know how rare that is for a non-sunbelt city to do that?!?

You are coming out over the last day with some negative things against the city. Like saying in another thread the city isn't worth paying an extra 4% for, then why are you posting here and living there? Also saying things like "a bad rap to outsiders" and "nice part" of the city? Give me a break!

relnahe Dec 20, 2013 5:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MSFHQ (Post 6380753)
All I know is I hope for Philly's sake that this build up and gentrification doesn't stop. The city needs another decade of CC cleaning up for sure. If this can be done without tax abatements, fine.

And if we stop these abatements how about we spend the increased revenue on something other than schools. Philadelphia schools are bad because of unruly kids and violence. If you want to invest in police and security fine, but this idea that buying newer text books or Mac computers is what will solve the problem is completely off base.

And this isn't a "giving rich people money" argument. It is making owning a condo or home in the city enticing when you have a ton of other option. Philly doesn't get its tax base from Kensington, it gets it from center city residents and businesses.

If CC needs another decade of cleaning I would hate to know what 99% of other American downtowns need. Also a huge amount of the tax base comes from northwest, northeast, many parts of s. Philly, university city. Not everything is CC. Even Kensington is experiencing a decent amount of gentrification.

bywoods Dec 20, 2013 5:19 PM

As upwardly mobile (but not wealthy) professionals, my wife and I are exactly the type of people the city needs to attract and retain. We live in a gentrified center city neighborhood and we pay lots of wage, sales, and real estate taxes. We could afford a much larger house in the suburbs, despite the higher RE taxes. However, we choose to live in a smaller home in the city for the walkable neighborhoods and amenities.

It is impossible to underemphasize the impact of the school budget issues on our willingness to remain in the city once our son is old enough for school. We live in a good catchment, with an elementary school that is not violent and is filled with a diverse array of motivated students from good families. The price of private school for a single child is an order of magnitude higher than real estate taxes for a center city or suburban home. We will be forced to abandon the city if our local school does not have the funding to pay for necessary staff like nurses or guidance counselors.

Right now, Center City residential real estate is booming. New apartment buildings are filling quickly despite high rents, and houses are flying off the market. The tax abatement program helped get things kicked off, and I'm sure many neighborhoods still need a tax abatement to support residential development, but not Broad and Spruce.

On the other hand, if the school problem is not fixed, then the Center City market will continue to be mostly composed of young professionals at the start of their careers and empty nesters. It is the mid career professionals who make the most money, pay the most taxes, and most importantly control where their businesses are located. These people typically have school age children and would prefer not to pay ~$20,000 per child per year for private school. They will never stay in the city unless the school problem is fixed.

MSFHQ Dec 20, 2013 5:28 PM

Philly has seen a population increase, no doubt. Roughly 9.2% over a decade. Compared to 14.8% for Boston and 12.2% for NYC. I would hardly call it a boom. I suppose as a relative newcomer to the city (4 years) I really consider CC to be Philly whereas it is much more than that.

I live in Philadelphia because I currently work here. If I am going to be jacked for 4% I might as well get some benefit. The city has crappy schools, a wage tax and a decent, but not amazing job market. I support anything that entices people to live and buy in this city as I think it will make it better. IMO, if you increase the cost of living in this city it will become less enticing for people (hence why I support the abatement).

As for saying negative things about this city, so what. This is a forum to talk about real estate development, not a cheerleading squad. I've lived and will live in other cities and get no pride or embarrassment from a zip code.

As for my cleaning up comment, once again, as a newcomer that is my opinion. You have nice Rittenhouse and then you waste land Market St. The city (once again, IMO) is filling in the rough spots, but it needs more people living and working in the city, and more building.

So I will continue to discuss building and development in the city and when appropriate, make an opinion based comment on my impression of Philadelphia. If that comes off negative I hope you understand that it isn't direct at you, just at one mans opinion of a city.

MSFHQ Dec 20, 2013 5:30 PM

Again, I am all for fixing the schools. I simply think it is not a monetary issue. More money =/= better schools.


My girlfriend teaches at a Catholic school around here and the crap she deals with is ridiculous and has nothing to do with funding. You could air drop a billion dollars on schools in NE Philly and nothing would change.

summersm343 Dec 20, 2013 5:32 PM

Guys.

Great conversation but it doesn't really belong in this thread. This thread is about the development of SLS International.

iheartphilly Dec 20, 2013 6:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bywoods (Post 6380941)
As upwardly mobile (but not wealthy) professionals, my wife and I are exactly the type of people the city needs to attract and retain. We live in a gentrified center city neighborhood and we pay lots of wage, sales, and real estate taxes. We could afford a much larger house in the suburbs, despite the higher RE taxes. However, we choose to live in a smaller home in the city for the walkable neighborhoods and amenities.

It is impossible to underemphasize the impact of the school budget issues on our willingness to remain in the city once our son is old enough for school. We live in a good catchment, with an elementary school that is not violent and is filled with a diverse array of motivated students from good families. The price of private school for a single child is an order of magnitude higher than real estate taxes for a center city or suburban home. We will be forced to abandon the city if our local school does not have the funding to pay for necessary staff like nurses or guidance counselors.

Right now, Center City residential real estate is booming. New apartment buildings are filling quickly despite high rents, and houses are flying off the market. The tax abatement program helped get things kicked off, and I'm sure many neighborhoods still need a tax abatement to support residential development, but not Broad and Spruce.

On the other hand, if the school problem is not fixed, then the Center City market will continue to be mostly composed of young professionals at the start of their careers and empty nesters. It is the mid career professionals who make the most money, pay the most taxes, and most importantly control where their businesses are located. These people typically have school age children and would prefer not to pay ~$20,000 per child per year for private school. They will never stay in the city unless the school problem is fixed.

Your analysis and thoughts are dead on. I've lived in the city for years when I was single, but with young kids now, it's a really hard pill to take unless you pay for private school or get into a good catchment zone up to high school. Imagine the amount of construction and economic development growth beyond what is happening today if young families with a good paying profession could raise their kids and be afforded a great public education that the city has to offer. Philly's public schools are holding back the exponential growth of the city. If I could, I would be back in a heartbeat with my family if the schools weren't a hot mess. :tup:

MusicMan84 Dec 20, 2013 8:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by summersm343 (Post 6380978)
Guys.

Great conversation but it doesn't really belong in this thread. This thread is about the development of SLS International.

This. :cheers:


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