Views From the Bridge: An Introduction

 
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Written by Dan Giannetto

Growing up in South Jersey, I would “cross the bridge” (typically the Betsy Ross, but sometimes the Ben Franklin) to come to a Philliesgame, visit the Franklin Institute and the Zoo, or maybe take relatives to see the Liberty Bell. It was a great place to visit, but living in the city never crossed my mind.

In 1998, that all changed when I rented my first apartment in University City at 41st and Spruce. From there, I neighborhood hopped and ended up loving my experience so much that I decided to make a career of it helping clients find their own perfect neighborhood and home. It’s been a blast!

In the two decades that I’ve been living and working here, Center Cityhas exploded. It’s gone from a nice place to visit to the place to live. Stunning new condos and apartments have transformed our skyline. Our parks, squares and historic spaces sparkle. Our restaurant scene is as good as any big city in the country. We’ve become the modern city that we always wanted to be, while maintaining the small scale and charm that makes us one of the most livable big cities in the country.

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In this blog, we’ll explore it all. The quaint streets and alleys, beautiful parks and trails, historic gems, fun local shops, and of course our incredible wealth of restaurants, bars and coffee shops. We’ll show you why everyone from Boomers to Gen Y are foregoing the suburbs and choosing the charm of our 336 year-old city.

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So, what exactly do we mean by Center City? So glad you asked. Center City continues to expand and evolve. We’re going to think big and explore it all. If it’s on this map, we’ll cover it.

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Center City’s beating heart runs approximately Vine to South, from the Schuylkill to the Delaware. These are the OG neighborhoods – Society HillWash WestOld CityRittenhouse Square and Fitler Square.

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At the turn of the Millennium (the beginning of Center City’s boom) the boundaries began to expand. To the South, Queen Village and Bella Vista were early favorites, and as they filled up, Graduate Hospital’s re-birth was not far behind.

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To the North, industrial buildings were transformed into soaring lofts in Callowhill while developers were taking a fresh look at what a rowhome could be in Northern Liberties.

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On the other side of Broad, the Art Museum Area (FairmountSpring Garden and Logan Square) was a haven for those who wanted access to walk to work and to Fairmount Park.

Today, we’re witness to a third phase of growth. To the South, new life is being breathed into PennsportPassyunk SquarePoint Breeze, and Grays Ferry.

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To the North, Fishtown has already arrived and Brewerytown is on the doorstep.

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Center City has something for everyone. Condo or rowhome, historic or modern, quiet and neighborhoody or noisy and action packed – it’s all available if you know where to look. Check back in and we’ll show you the way!

 
Mackenzie Blue