At age 49, Eric Blumenfeld is pairing his knowledge of Philadelphia real estate with desire, creativity and innovation to create a “comeback” neighborhood along North Broad Street. His vision for a hip new stretch of North Broad Street has already begun, starting with his reinvention of 640 North Broad, which he successfully turned into a bustling apartment building featuring Marc Vetri’s Osteria as a lively centerpiece.
With his recent acquisition of the landmark Divine Lorraine Hotel, Blumenfeld is one step closer to his dream. The Divine Lorraine will become another lively apartment/restaurant complex opposite a four-acre lot, also owned by Blumenfeld, which the visionary developer hopes to build a new public-school campus. This original NoBro Edu-Hood would include contemporary facilities for Masterman (the city’s most in-demand public high school) and the possibility of three other local high schools: Ben Franklin, Parkway and the Franklin Learning Center.
The rehab of the North Broad Street neighborhood ebbs through Blumenfeld’s conscious, making his drive for the revamped section of the City of Brotherly Love his latest (and biggest) project to date. Blumenfeld states enthusiastically, “This neighborhood needs to be transformed … and I’m telling you, I am crazy enough to make this happen.” Blumenfield’s valiant efforts to help reform a lost neighborhood have recently been embraced by the Philadelphia media. In a the October issue of Philadelphia magazine, reporter Stephen Fried chronicles Blumenfeld’s life story, highlighting his life’s journey, his struggles with his estranged brother and his public dispute with his recent business partner. Blumenfield labels himself as the “fuckup” child, and laments his father’s (and hero’s) passing in Fried’s article. Ultimately, Blumenfeld’s struggles have given him the ability to persevere through hardship; his novelty and inspiring attitude polishes the nicely formed diamond that the pressures of his life have created, similar to the way the ambitious developer hopes to be polishing the run down section of North Broad Street with beautiful new buildings providing upscale living, dining and education options to Philadelphia’s movers and shakers.
Check out Phillymag’s article about Eric Blumenfeld, by clicking here:
Read reporter Jennifer Lin’s recent story about Blumenfeld in The Philadelphia Inquirer here: