ABOVE PHOTO: Glen Falso, Jr. (holding ribbon), Jimmie Reed (holding scissors) and Councilwoman Cindy Bass (D- 8th Dist.)(far right) cut the ribbon at Pelham Place Apartments on Thursday, October 5th in Mt. Airy section of Philadelphia. (Photo: Robert Mendelsohn)
By Leah Fletcher
For those looking for some fresh air and a little green space to call their own in the city of Philadelphia, Mt. Airy always has been one of the neighborhoods they headed to. Its small village setting with residential dwellings fairly close to one another — anchored by commercial, social and religious institutions — supports a serene and tranquil residential setting.
A recent addition to the community is 6610 At Pelham Place on Germantown Avenue. The four-story, 36-unit apartment building, which held its grand opening on Oct. 5, is the newest in luxury and sophisticated urban living in Mt. Airy and the most recent residential offering of Main Street Development.
“We wanted to build something special that is luxurious, but affordable, and sophisticated. 6610 At Pelham Place delivers on all of this,” said Glen Falso, Jr., the principal of Main Street Development.
Falso, a fourth generation Philadelphia builder, was joined by a host of politicians, business and community leaders and neighborhood residents, who attended the event to voice their support for the project.
The project is the fourth large-scale development in Mt. Airy within a year and it signals a new era in the community’s development where little major building has occurred in a half century, said City Councilwoman Cindy M. Bass (D- 8th Dist.).
The influx of new businesses to Mt. Airy is a “cultural building revival” buoyed by “the neighborhood’s reasonable housing costs and relatively secure environment,” Bass concluded.
Jim Reed, the owner of Little Jimmie’s Bakery Café and Little Jimmie’s Bake House, views 6610 Pelham Place’s commercial space as a possible incubator for small, local entrepreneurs. Under his business umbrella, Reed also operates a catering service and has plans to open a fresh produce venue at 6610 At Pelham Place by early November.
“There is affordable commercial space that can meet the needs of small community businesses,” Reed said.
Although Falso and his associates also have built hundreds of homes throughout Philadelphia, including Manayunk, Graduate Hospital area, South Philadelphia, Roxborough, and Blue Bell, he believes that 6610 At Pelham Place is a special project.
“The demographics of Mt. Airy make this Philadelphia neighborhood, with its welcoming atmosphere, a place to call home,” said Falso, who also advertises its small community feel within the big city.
The facility provides apartment homes with one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans. Each of the nine offered floor plans are spacious with high ceilings and many have private outdoor balconies. Each unit also features hardwood flooring, contemporary baths and vanities, and stainless steel appliances. There also is an environmentally-friendly rooftop deck and a 24-hour gym on the premises.
“Our primary goal is to have residents who own the live, work and play lifestyle,” explained Falso.
Falso is correct when he touts the advantages of apartment living in Mt. Airy, but also its benefits.
For the apartment dweller, as well as residents of 6610 at Pelham Place, seeking convenience to transportation, there is great shopping, sublime dining, hiking and mountain biking trails along the Wissahickon Creek. There also are yoga studios, fitness centers and arts venues in the neighborhood or within minutes of the city. The Free Library’s Lovett branch on Germantown Avenue has undergone a major redesign to incorporate a new public park with a reading garden, an amphitheater and an area for creative play.