Located less than four miles from Philadelphia’s vibrant Center City, is divided into two distinct districts known as “Near Northeast” and “Far Northeast” delineated by Pennypack Creek. The area is bounded by the Delaware River on the east, Bucks County on the north, Montgomery County on the west, and Frankford/Tacony Creek on the south. The area is easily accessible by car via Interstate 95 and various regional highways, and by train on the SEPTA regional rail system’s Market-Frankford line. Within the submarket, the main transportation corridors are Roosevelt Boulevard (US 1), Cottman Avenue (PA 73), Frankford Avenue (US 13), Oxford Avenue (PA 232), and Bustleton Avenue (PA 532), all of which are serviced by SEPTA’s bus system. Northeast also features the Northeast Philadelphia Airport, the sixth busiest airport in Pennsylvania.
Historically, Northeast’s economy has been driven by industrial sectors such as manufacturing and warehousing, but due to a general decline in industrial employment, the district has developed a robust healthcare base. Two nationally recognized medical facilities, the Fox Chase Cancer Center and Friends Hospital, are located in Near Northeast and multiple other hospitals, including two members of the Aria Health system, are situated within the submarket. Additionally, Northeast Philadelphia has a very active retail sector. Philadelphia Mills, a 1.6-million -square-foot outlet shopping mall in Far Northeast bordering Bensalem, is one of the most visited attractions in the state and is anchored by an AMC Theatre, Boscov’s, JCPenney, and Walmart. Near Northeast boasts a dynamic retail climate as well; Cottman Avenue features Roosevelt Mall, a 560,000-square-foot outdoor shopping center anchored by Macy’s, and the Cottman-Bustleton Center, and many of the district’s streets are lined with charming boutiques and both chain and family-owned restaurants.
Positioned on the south side of Northeast Philadelphia, the Frankford neighborhood is primed for revitalization and developers have taken notice. Old warehouses and vacant lots abound in the area due to its past as a heavy industrial neighborhood and have become targets for conversions into lofts, condos, and apartment buildings. Frankford is quickly becoming a destination for millennial homebuyers and renters who are intrigued by the area’s vibrant arts scene, new residential development, and diverse population. Additionally, the Frankford Community Development Corporation, working in conjunction with the Office of Housing and Community Development, recently introduced an initiative called “Destination Frankford,” which aims to enhance and expand the neighborhood’s arts and creative business economy, as well as spearhead revitalization efforts by bringing new investment to the community.
The featured properties in this month’s rent comparable survey represent six communities in Northeast Philadelphia built between 1959 and 1970. 53.0% of multifamily properties in the submarket were built before 1970 and average asking rents are in the high $800s – approximately 2.5% below the market average for all vintages. Unit sizes in this comp set range from 304 square feet for a studio to 1,000 square feet in two-bedroom units. Due to the age of properties in this neighborhood, many communities do not provide in-unit washers and dryers but security and controlled access systems are the norm, and property amenities include fitness centers, swimming pools, clubhouses, and off-street parking. Application fees range from $35 to $50 and while pets are allowed in most cases, many communities require substantial pet deposits and monthly pet fees. Select utilities (gas, water, sewer, trash, etc.) are often included in the rent.
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