Tenants of Philadelphia's diamond district get eviction notices
Pedestrians walk past jewelry stores Aug. 17, 2016, in the Jewelers Row diamond district of Philadelphia. Luxury home developer Toll Brothers wants to build a condominium tower after demolishing buildings on Philadelphia’s historic Jewelers Row, a red-brick paved street that’s the nation’s oldest diamond district and home to over 300 jewelers, engravers, watch vendors and diamond dealers. (AP Photo/Dake Kang)
(Philadelphia) — Several tenants of the nation’s oldest diamond district have received eviction notices as a luxury home developer plans to build a high-rise condo tower on the block.
Some tenants of Philadelphia’s Jewelers Row say they were told in the notices that arrived this week that they must vacate by May 31.
Despite its historic status, Jewelers Row isn’t listed in the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places. That enabled developer Toll Brothers to get construction permits and demolition approval in 2016.
After resistance from jewelers and preservationists, the builder modified the design several times.
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Toll completed its final required review by the city’s design board in April 2018. Two court challenges over the project have failed.
Historical Commission Spokesman Paul Chrystie tells the Inquirer a nomination for it to become a historic district won’t be heard until August.