On Wednesday, February 7th, 2018, the Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustment approved a variance allowing the development to proceed as planned. Representatives of Mt. Airy USA, the Drumcliff Foundation, and Metcalfe Architecture & Design all spoke on behalf of the project, and members of the Mt. Airy Art Garage turned out en-masse to support the development.
The future home of the Mt. Airy Art Garage will be located on a long-blighted property amid the 6600 block of Germantown Ave. in the Mt. Airy Neighborhood of Northwest Philadelphia. An institution and treasure in the neighborhood for nearly a decade, the Mt. Airy Art Garage brings art, artists, joy and beauty to a neighborhood already known for its vibrant, colorful character. Their presence on The Avenue will not only reinforce their importance to this community, but will highlight the value Mt. Airy places on art, culture, and the humanities. A scuplture of significant stature – to be designed and commissioned through a competition among local artist at a later date – will adorn the front façade of the new building, acting as a beacon on this gateway block into the Mt. Airy.
Our proposed design includes an art gallery and administrative spaces on the ground floor, artist studios in the basement. In keeping with the multi-use nature of the neighborhood, two floors of residential units will top off the building. Colors, light, materials and textures are thoughtfully arranged in a way that will complement the surrounding buildings. Though larger than its neighbors, the building’s bends, balconies, awnings and openings are carefully composed to feel right at home. The 9,800 square foot building is expected to open in late-2018.