1725 Chestnut sold for $2.2M: Retail or restaurant?

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A look at the 1700 block of Chestnut Street from Google Street View.

Gene Muchnick, who used to run an electronics store at 1725 Chestnut St. near Rittenhouse Square, has sold the property for $2.2 million to Midwood Management, the New York-based firm headed by Steven Schwartz and John Usdan, which has become a major owner of commercial properties in the neighborhood, says Laurence Steinberg, senior vice president of CBRE | Fameco, who represented the seller.

It's "the last vacant building on this 1700 block," and had most recently been home to chain restaurants -- Moe's Southwest Grill, before that Famous Dave's BBQ Shack -- "but with the new strength of retail on this block, that may change," Steinberg adds. "Leasing interest is very strong, and I expect rents on that block to continue to show substantial growth with the soon-to-open American Eagle Outfitters, Nordstrom Rack and Forever 21" nearby. Forever 21 hasn't announced a new location, but Steinberg confirms a deal has been signed.

"There is an interesting shift happening in the shopping momentum in Center City from Walnut Street to Chestnut Street," he added hopefully. "If you add in the Uniqlo store that will open on the 1600 Block, I can see retail traffic and sales on Chestnut Street soon outpacing Walnut."

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