Neighborhood guide: Old City

Old City’s many galleries open their doors with new exhibits on First Fridays.

America’s most historic square mile needs a grocery store. Old City — home to the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, the Betsy Ross House and other tourist favorites — has more chic loft-style condos than you can shake a stick at, but it lacks some of the commercial options that help a neighborhood thrive, says realtor Antonio Atacan of Keller Williams Center City.

“There are art galleries and restaurants and bars, but there was no commercial explosion, no new diversity in terms of retail, that you see in a place like Northern Liberties,” Atacan says.

But, he adds, for a young professional working in Center City who wants easy access to hopping nightlife, Old City is perfect.

The neighborhood, which runs from Front Street to Sixth and from Walnut to Vine, also attracts some empty nesters in their 50s and 60s looking to leave the boring ’burbs behind and settle into a hip, urban condo.

“There’s a large divide between demographics here. You have the 65-year-old retirees living very cushy existences and the post-college chums bunking together and trashing their place every weekend,” says Eric Berley, 31. He and his brother, Ryan, own Franklin Fountain, an old-fashioned ice-cream shop at 116 Market St. They’re in the process of restoring Shane Confectionery, a 100-year-old candy store a few doors down.

Berley, who’s lived in Old City for seven years, says the nightlife causes occasional problems for residents — but the area has “good potential” and some new commercial development in the proposal stage.

 “The sun is rising,” he says. “I’d paint the picture as promising.”


OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…


Mets mascot Mr. Met target of Bill Clinton…

Mets mascot Mr. Met has told how he ended up in the crosshairs of a Secret Service sniper rifle. The man behind the Mr. Met…


Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.


African couple claiming misidentification in robbery case to…

At a bail hearing today for Vickson and Lorfu Korlewala, charged in the robbery of an 80-year-old woman, bail was reduced from $1 million total to $500,000.


'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…


Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.


Dick Wolf to bring fictionalized world of 'Law…

A&E has ordered a pilot called "D.O.A." from "Law and Order" mastermind Dick Wolf that will focus on real detectives reexamining cold cases. A trio…


Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

The actor on history lessons, a new network and showing his butt.


Rangers draw first blood against Flyers in Game…

Brad Richards and Derek Stepan scored power-play goals 47 seconds apart to lead the Rangers to a 4-1 win.


Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.


Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.


Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.


Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.


Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.


Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.


Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.