The MacNN Web site has rekindled hopes of a downtown Philadelphia (Penn.) store with an insider’s tip that Apple has signed a lease for a space in a Walnut Street building, about 10 blocks from Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. The tipster identifies the location as 1619 Walnut Street, a six-story building identified to IFO by tipsters back in 2006. The 39,000 square-foot building was most-recently occupied by an upscale restaurant on the ground floor, and offices on the upper floors. The restaurant closed suddenly on January 2nd after the building owner reportedly negotiated a renewal buy-out option from the restaurant owner, who had been paying $19 per square-foot. The building owner hopes to attract a new occupant willing to pay the $57 per square-foot going rate for the Walnut Street area. The ground, second and third levels are available, according to real estate records. The building dates from 1937 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Buildings, indicating Apple would occupy one or more floors, rather than demolishing the structure and building anew. In the 1960s it was home to Westinghouse Broadcasting and laster housed television station KYW. The building sold in March, 2008 for $7.1 million, and the owner has recently upgraded the mechanical systems.
Download (pdf) the nomination form for the National Historic Register listing.E-mail this story