Despite the glaring, neon orange sign reading “demolish or repair,” Deputy Mayor Alan Greenberger is assuring the public that the aging Divine Lorraine Hotel will not be knocked down.
The notice was recently slapped on the front door of the North Broad Street relic, sending preservationists into panic mode. But apparently, the violation is just a part of the city’s process to repair the Divine, ensuring that the building will be properly sealed off from trespassers.
Greenberger told Philly.com. “We’re going to get this button-downed better so we don’t have crazy people breaking in and starting fires.”
Soon L&I will block all open windows and doors, in addition to removing the lower part of the fire escape and repairing the surrounding fence.
Earlier in the month, local developer Eric Blumenfield announced his plan to turn the Divine Lorraine into a school for use by students from MasterMan School, Franklin Learning Center, Benjamin Franklin High and Parkway Center City High.
Philly is chock-full of aging, delinquent buildings. Earlier this morning, a vacant house in North Philadelphia collapsed without warning, as MSNBC reports. And if the city doesn’t start renovations soon, the Divine Lorraine could wind up meeting a similar fate.
Source: Philly.com | Photo: DAVID SWANSON / Staff Photographer for The Inquirer