Upper Darby Township, located in Delaware County in southeastern Pennsylvania, is approximately 10 miles west of Center City Philadelphia and adjacent to Haverford Township. The Township, originally settled in in the mid-17th century, totals nearly eight square miles and is the seventh most populous municipality in Pennsylvania. Upper Darby Township is home to nearly 90,000 residents and contains the communities of Drexel Hill, Aronimink, Beverly Hills, Bywood, Drexel Park, Highlands Park, Llanerch Hills, Kellyville, Kirklyn, Oakview, Primos, Secane, Stonehurst, and Westbrook Park. The township is served by 12 public schools, plus The Kindergarten Center, totaling nearly 12,000 students.
Upper Darby’s principal business district at the intersection of 69th Street, Market Street, and West Chester Pike serves as a transportation hub with access to public transit via the Norristown High Speed line and the Market-Frankford line at SEPTA’s 69th Street Terminal. Over 35,000 commuters pass through the station daily and multiple trolley and bus routes connect the terminal to major SEPTA lines within the greater Philadelphia metro area.
Major economic industries in the Upper Darby Township and the surrounding areas include healthcare and social assistance, educational services, and Retail Trade. Following the construction of the 69th Street station in the early 20th century, the 69th Street shopping district was the second busiest shopping area in the region, just behind Center City Philadelphia. The district is now home to many historic Art-Deco style buildings and architecture and the street is the major shopping draw of area residents, with numerous small businesses and big box retailers such as Burlington Coat Factory, H&M, Ross Dress for Less, and more. An additional area attractions includes the historic Tower Theater at the intersection of 69th and Ludlow Streets, which has held legendary concerts by the likes of David Bowie, Genesis, Lou Reed, Steve Miller, and Bruce Springsteen.
Looking ahead, the township’s comprehensive plan seeks to expand the many historic commercial and employment corridors of the Township by establishing a redevelopment authority and through the creation of a BID (Business Improvement District) along the heart of 69th Street. A number of projects are underway or upcoming along 69th Street, including the redevelopment of St. Alice’s Parish into 54 senior housing units, and the conversion of the former Sears building on 69th Street into a 100-room hotel and retail complex. Both developments received incentive financing packages that included a mix of public funding or state tax credits.
The featured properties in this month’s rent survey represent six communities in Upper Darby Township built between 1932 and 1972. Average occupancy rates for these communities range from 93% to 99%. Average rental rates per square foot range from $1.07 to $1.56, with average unit sizes ranging from 511 to 1,045 square feet. Common area amenities include on-site laundry facilities, tennis courts, courtyards, and secured hall entry. Unit amenities feature hardwood flooring or wall-to-wall carpeting, ceiling fans, walk-in closets, and fireplaces in select properties. Residents pay an application fee ranging from $35 to $55 and post security deposits of one month’s rent on average. Pets are allowed in the majority of communities with some breed restrictions; residents pay pet deposits ranging from $200 to $300 and pet rents ranging from $10 to $25 per month. Residents are responsible for electric in the majority of the communities and landlords are generally responsible for water and sewer, trash removal, and in some cases, fuel/gas expenses.
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