Editor's note: An earlier version inaccurately reported the status of the neighborhood's legal appeal. Although they did not drop legal action, they will refrain from acting on it for 30 days. It has since been corrected.
After several meetings and back-and-forth exchanges, a developer agreed to stay demolition at 5901 Ridge Ave. for 30 days to pursue options that could both preserve the historical Bunting Home and make economic sense for the property owners.
Frank Keel, spokesperson for the property owners Giovannone Construction, Inc., released this statement Friday afternoon.
"All parties are working toward an amicable and economically feasible solution which could ultimately save the Bunting house from the wrecking ball. Several viable options will be explored over the next 30 days," he said.
On Wednesday, Giovannone agreed to a demolition delay if the four local civic associations—Central Roxborough Civic Association, Manayunk Neighborhood Council, Wissahickon Neighbors Civic Association and Ridge Park Civic Association—would refrain from acting on a legal appeal with the Department of License and Inspections for 30 days.
All the parties met Friday at the Roxborough Development Corporation offices where the neighbors agreed to a 30-day delay on their legal appeal, according to Joshua Cohen, special adviser to Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr.
"We all came to an amicable agreement and want to work toward a solution that preserves the building and works financially for the company," Cohen said.
The property owners legally secured permits to demolish the property and turn it into a vacant lot, which they could have done Thursday. They contend the interior's condition makes it difficult to obtain a tenant and that renovations are beyond their financial means.
The Roxborough Development Corporation has agreed to aid the company in finding the right tenant.
View Keel's entire statement below:
"Giovannone Construction, Inc. met again today with representatives from the Central Roxborough Civic Association and the Roxborough Development Corporation, along with Josh Cohen of Councilman Curtis Jones' office. At the meeting, Giovannone Construction officially agreed to stay the planned demolition of 5901 Ridge Avenue for 30 days while options are being reviewed which would protect the interests of the Giovannones and their investor partners, while preserving the Bunting House.
"All parties are working toward an amicable and economically feasible solution which could ultimately save the Bunting house from the wrecking ball. Several viable options will be explored over the next 30 days.
"As life-long community residents, the Giovannone family today made clear their genuine desire to try to save the Bunting house from final demolition and preserve it as a long-term community asset."