If there’s one thing you should know about Philly, it’s that it’s a town of neighborhoods. Philadelphia neighborhoods each have their own distinct flair and personality. Whether you’re thinking of buying a home in Philadelphia to be closer to your job or because you love what the city has to offer, make sure to start by checking out the five neighborhoods below.
If you want to live in the heart of downtown Philly, Rittenhouse Square is the neighborhood to check out. It’s near pretty much everything, including transit (regional rail and subways), restaurants, and shopping. You’ll find plenty of places to hang out after work, from bars to coffee shops — and if you’re looking for a place to get down to work, co-working spots include Benjamin’s Desk and CultureWorks. The neighborhood is named for one of the original parks included in the design of the city by William Penn.
You’ll find plenty of excitement in Passyunk Square. The main avenue through the neighborhood, East Passyunk, has been undergoing a bit of a makeover in recent years, thanks to the restaurant rennaissance happening on its main drag. It’s now home to a number of popular, highly praised restaurants and quirky shops, such as Era Atomica (a vintage store specializing in mid-century housewares) and South Philly Comics. While located in South Philadelphia, the neighborhood is well-served by public transit, including buses and the Broad Street line. It also has metered and permit street parking. Scope out the South Philly Co-Op Workspace if you’re looking for a place to get down to business.
Like Passyunk Square, Fishtown (located northeast of Center City) has seen a bit of a revival, owing to some major improvements made along Frankford Avenue, its central thoroughfare. A number of restaurants have opened up on the avenue recently, including beer garden Frankford Hall, operated by well-known restaurateur Stephen Starr. The neighborhood is also easily accessible by the Market-Frankford elevated subway stop or, if you have a car, by I-95.
While Philadelphia neighborhoods like East Passyunk and Fishtown have gotten a lot of attention recently, Newbold has stayed a bit more under the radar. Located directly to the west of Passyunk Square, the neighborhood has a lot to offer, including housing prices that are lower than in other parts of town, quick access to the downtown part of the city by subway or foot, and a few restaurants and bars. Newbold doesn’t have its own supermarket, though it is home to a community garden and a weekly farmers’ market.
The Fairmount section of Philadelphia, sometimes referred to as the “Art Museum Area,” is a great place to live if you enjoy being part of the action. For culture lovers, it’s a stone’s throw from the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the tree-lined path to the museum. The area also borders Fairmount Park, which offers plenty of walking, running, and biking trails, as well as picnic spots and fishing spots. If you need to head out of the city to get to work, the neighborhood is near I-76. A few buses will take you from Fairmount into Center City, where you can hop on the regional rails out of the city.
No matter your reason for wanting to call Philadelphia home, the great variety of neighborhoods means you’ll almost certainly find one you love.
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