The Second Coming of Bart Blatstein

The legacy of one of Philadelphia's most prominent and controversial developers will ultimately be determined by what happens in Northern Liberties.

By Steve Volk
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 3 | Posted Oct. 13, 2004

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Broad and Cecil B. Moore
"This will be the single biggest development in the history of North Philadelphia," Blatstein told a crowd recently at the Union League. Picked by the Redevelopment Authority of Philadelphia, Blatstein is set to construct what he calls the "gateway to North Philadelphia" at the corner of Broad and Cecil B. Moore: an apartment complex with 800 beds for students, a six-screen movie theater and 60,000 square feet of retail.

What Blatstein's planning for this hurting former steel town in nearby Chester County is akin to restoring Michael Jackson's face--a whopping 750 apartments, 550,000 square feet of retail and commercial space, and 40,000 square feet of "entertainment facilities" over 10 to 15 years.

  Penn's Landing
This site isn't Blatstein's--yet. He's one of two developers still in the running after a lengthy proposal process. The decision lies with Mayor Street, and could come next week or two years from now. Blatstein proposed a $258 million project spread over 14 acres that includes retail, entertainment, parking, residential buildings, a river tram and a concert venue. Blatstein, like the man who would be king, says developing Penn's Landing would be like "pulling the sword from the stone." (S.V.)

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Comments 1 - 3 of 3
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1. Tim lancaster said... on May 15, 2009 at 12:01PM

“For a fifty year old guy with a great love of architecture and real estate. I,m inspired by Mr.Baltstein vision. Working for a competitor in a centre city property mgmt. co. and once having the opportunity to purchase a walk up trinity there in the early nineties. I was shot down by my wife at the time who could not see my vision.Kudos to the modern day Albert Greenfield.”

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2. Daniel Chow said... on Jun 8, 2009 at 10:17AM

“enjoyable reading and very insightful.

i came across this discussion at

it's a very interesting discussion at italktrash titled "Wasik Sees Rise of Modular, Portable, Energy-Efficient Housing" that i think compliments this article.

May 20, 2007 (Bloomberg) -- Bloomberg News columnist John F. Wasik talks with Tom Keene about his forthcoming book from Bloomberg Press, ``The Cul-De-Sac Syndrome, Turning Around the Unsustainable Dream,'' energy-efficient housing and personal finance.

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3. Anonymous said... on Dec 29, 2011 at 12:58AM

“i find it utterly funny that he would have tenants on his properties whose brothers are known child abusers let alone they are known in the national socialist movement. Seems as though Mr. Baltstein should do background checks on prospective clients before leasing anything to them. In my opinion who really wants to eat food or anything else served by jewish haters?”


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