Jeffrey Tottaro Photography

NC Five is just one piece of the overall effort to redevelop North Philadelphia—but it’s a powerful one.

The development includes 133 housing units—111 income-targeted and rent-restricted—and a far-ranging list of amenities for tenants, including an on-site resident services coordinator. There’s also a community kitchen, a fitness center, a computer room, package lockers, secure bike storage, outdoor recreation and play areas, and a landscaped courtyard with grilling stations. All are free for NC Five residents.

It’s part of the larger North Central Neighborhood Initiative Plan—a move to “transform and redevelop severely distressed and outdated public housing” in the area, according to Jenny Wu, managing director of development for Jonathan Rose Cos., the developer on the NC Five project.

All in all, NC Five spans three buildings and 2.6 acres. The size, Wu says, posed a challenge when seeking funding.

Jeffrey Tottaro Photography

“The financing on this project was particularly difficult given Pennsylvania’s unique restrictions on the maximum amount of tax credits allowable per unit and the relatively high construction costs required for a large site,” Wu says.

The approximately $51.6 million project was ultimately financed through housing tax credits, bonds, and loans.

Residents of the former Norris Homes townhouses, which sat on the site until being torn down in 2019, were critical in the design of the project, and 45 of the property’s units were reserved for returning tenants through the Rental Assistance Demonstration program. The property, which is a short walk from Temple University and a SEPTA regional rail station, also includes retail space and a streetside mural by local artist Alison Dilworth.