Busy corners do wonders for a neighborhood, and a dark corner at Front and Market Streets in Old City this fall will have a restaurant.
Partner Aaron Kavulich, a Scranton native who lived in Pittsburgh and operated restaurants there, won the backing of the Old City Civic Association, which right now is frowning on several projects, including those at 312 Market St. (the former Patou, whose applicant owns bars in West Philly) and 123 Chestnut St. (the former Rococo and World Fusion, whose applicant wants to install a New Orleans-themer). There's an Indian restaurant in early stages of development at 246 Market St., formerly Bluezette and Prive. But I digress.
On Wednesday (Aug. 24), Kavulich got approval from the city Zoning Board to move forward with his planned restaurant at 100 Market St., a former barroom that has been unoccupied for at least 20 years. (For years, the piece was in the real estate portfolio of Paul Rimmeir, who owned a number of decaying parcels in that part of town before his death in 1998.)
Kavulich needed a variance for the four-story building to allow use of the basement and first two floors for operations, with private dining and an office on the third floor and an apartment on the fourth. The building previously was approved for restaurant use on one and two plus apartment space on three and four.
Kavulich and attorney Thomas Witt of Cozen O'Connor told the board that the restaurant would not offer live entertainment and would have a bar only on the first floor. Its hours would be 10 a.m. till late night daily.
Kavulich told me that its style will be new American with a heavy focus on local and sustainable ingredients.
He's shopping for a name that reflects the neighborhood's history. He's aiming to open in November.