Judge upholds decision allowing demolition of local landmark
The fate of the mansion at 40th and Pine streets has been embroiled in legal battles for years
April 10, 2014, 6:11 pm · Updated April 11, 2014, 1:56 am·
A state court upheld a decision that allows Penn to demolish an historic landmark at 40th and Pine streets in order to build new graduate housing.
Wednesday’s Court of Common Pleas decision upheld a Board of Licenses and Inspections Review ruling. It also follows years of battles between the University and members of the local community, specifically the Woodland Terrace Homeowners Association, which has filed multiple cases against the University over the mansion, which formerly operated as a nursing home, at 400 S. 40th St.
The house has been on the University’s mind since it first purchased the property in 2003. Four years after the purchase, in 2007, Penn proposed turning the property into an 11-story hotel. In 2012, the University shifted its plan to a five-story plan for graduate housing that would require the demolition of the site.
Most recently, in November of last year, the University proposed a new design for graduate housing at 40th and Pine streets — one that would not require the demolition of the landmark. However, the neighbors in legal battles with Penn did not accept the new proposal.
Paul Boni, the attorney representing the Woodland Terrace Homeowners Association, could not be reached for comment, but posted on Twitter Wednesday night that his clients would be appealing the decision. University representatives could not immediately be reached for a comment.
Staff writer Jenny Lu contributed reporting.