Going green in Francisville

A rendering of Folsom Powerhouse in Francisville.
A rendering of Folsom Powerhouse in Francisville.

Last year, the Redevelopment Authority put a piece of land up for bid in the Francisville neighborhood. Today, nearly a year later, eco-friendly developer Postgreen Homes and Equinox Management & Construction are hosting a groundbreaking party at the future home of Folsom Powerhouse. If you’re in the neighborhood, throw on a hard hat, check out the designs, and take part in an installation that lets you make your mark on the building.

Folsom Powerhouse is another entry from Postgreen in Mayor Nutter’s race to make Philly the greenest city in America. Before this, we’ve seen these guys use cork for building cladding with the Pop! Project in East Kensington and install green roofs on Avant Garage in Fishtown. They’ve proven to the city that not only are they innovative and creative, but they also understand how to build very green homes.

When asked if this was their greenest project yet, Postgreen founder Chad Ludeman says, “I’m not sure how you measure something like that, but this is pretty high up there. We’re doing some new things, like storm-water management and a solar array on the rentals. That was inspired by [the city program] Greenworks, who set a goal to have 20 percent of the city’s power be renewable by 2030.”

Now, about that whole leaving your mark at the groundbreaking thing. They’re calling it the Greenway, and it functions a lot like those chalkboard “Before I Die…” walls that have been installed in various cities, encouraging people to add their own dreams to the list. The Greenway, though, will focus more on how to live an environmentally responsible life, and use long-lasting paint markers. “It’s an interactive piece,” says Ludeman. “People will write about shopping locally or how they commute to work. Those signs will be a permanent fixture.”

Super stoops
Of course, not all aspects of the 31-unit , mixed-use Folsom Powerhouse are centered around being green — sometimes it’s enough to just give the people what they want, so the development will boast “super stoops.”

“A lot of the old rowhomes have that nice stoop culture, and you sometimes lose that in the new homes,” says Ludeman. “We wanted to bring it back as sort of one continuous stoop.” But it does have an eco-friendly spin – the stoops are being built out of reclaimed lumber.

Groundbreaking
Wednesday, Oct. 23, 3 p.m.
18th and Folsom streets
After-party
4 p.m.
Urban Saloon
2120 Fairmount Ave.
www.folsom-powerhouse.com


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