December 14, 2018

   

The Evolution of West 1st Ave and Fayette Street

The Evolution of West 1st Ave and Fayette Street

12/5/2018

by Brian Coll

 

With the wrecking ball around the corner for the office building at 1st and Fayette, more and more people are asking what’s it going to be? Why are they tearing it down? What used to be there? When did they build that building anyway…..

 

So, here are some of the answers….. prior to 1919 there was a small candy store there (no, we don’t think it was Edward Freeman’s Nut Factory and Candy Store, if you’ve never been there go check it out) It was knocked down to build the Riant Movie Theatre which opened in 1921. The Riant was operated for about 50 years before it was demolished in 1976, where it was part of the urban redevelopment. If you would like to read more about the urban redevelopment in Conshohocken there is a very large section in the book Conshohocken & West Conshohocken People, Places and Stories. The section is about 100 pages long and worth a read.

 

 

For a number of years, once the rubble was cleared the property looked like this, and was a place where kids played.

 

 

The ground was cleared and in 1983 they broke ground to begin construction of the first office building in Conshohocken.

 

 

 

Here are some progress photos from 1984

 

 

This was the first office building in Conshohocken and we all have to thank Ray Weinmann and John Meehan. Of course, none of it happens without forward thinking council people and residents going back to the 1950’s to see Conshohocken was going to change from a factory and mill town to a borough of the future. Joe Burns always comes to mind as one of, if not the driving force.

 

These next pictures are what is to come. These photos are taken off of the Keystone Property Group website.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

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