1902 from King's

              Philadelphia, c/o Places in Time

40th and Pine Streets, Philadelphia

John P. Levy House - David Porter Leas Mansion

1963 Philadelphia

              City Archives
Woodland Terrace and the Pine Street Neighbors coalition are again defending this gateway to the neighborhoods of West Philadelphia. We are challenging the Philadelphia Historical Commission's granting of demolition based on 'financial hardship'.  The owner, the University of Pennsylvania, wants to have a developer construct and operate an apartment building. You can help stop the demolition by signing our on-line petition.

The property in question, 400 S. 40th Street, is in two National Register Districts, adjacent to a third, and a stone's throw from the Woodland Cemetery, a National Register Landmark. In 1973 it was added to Philadelphia's Historic Register, joining the previously certified neighboring properties on the 4000 block of Pine Street.  (map)

SE View of Levy-Leas House 400 S 40th St
 House still quite recognizeable in spite of 1960s addition.
 Look over the top of the 1960s addition.

Stair tower was the most visually unfortunate addition (1975).
However, all of the walls of the house itself  survive intact.
  Take a look around the back of the tower
Neighboring houses on Pine Street are also on both Philadelphia and National Historic Registers.  At the far left is the corner of 40th and Pine.   Explore more of the neighborhood
The Case against Hardship Demolition
Chronology of 400 S. 40th Street Before and After Penn's ownership
40th & Pine: History, Historic Designation & Zoning
Contact the 40th & Pine Neighbors for information or to make donations

Links to other websites:

Why the John P. Levy's House is Important  Hidden City
From Hamiltonville to Samuel Sloan and the Emerging Suburb

City Planning:
Plan for West Philadelphia, 1995
 "University City's neighborhoods will continue to attract professional families, and the character and integrity of those neighborhoods will not be threatened by expansion of the universities."   p. 16
Penn's pledge of Responsible Urban Development  Jim Saska, Daily Pennsylvanian  (2008)

Other Philadelphia Historic Properties In Danger of Demolition:
Boyd Theatre Threatened Again Friends of the Boyd
Planned demo of Sloan designed church on 40th Street Hidden City *Now DEMOLISHED*
Preservation Alliance's Advocacy Page for challenges to three other demolition approvals:
- Church of the Assumption (Spring Garden Street, Callowhill neighborhood)
- Dilworth house (6th Street, Society Hill)
- Cathedral's Parish Houses (38th and Chestnut Street, University City)
Pearson designed house lost to the relocated Campus Inn Hotel project.
  ( part 4 of Hidden City's report on "A Broken System")

In the News:
Tie Decision in the First Appeal
PlanPhilly.com (Feb 22, 2013)
If These Walls Could Talk: Deconstructing History
34th Street Magazine
(Sept 20, 2012)34th St Magazine Cover
Penn's lawyers attempt to deny community's right to appealPlanphilly
Philadelphia Historical Commission Lacks Spine? 
Philadelphia Daily News/ Philly.com
(July 3, 2012)
Community Reaction to 'Azalea Gardens'
UC Review
, October 19, 2011
- Show your Support! -
Sign our On-line Petition
Contact Us!
We'll forward your e-mail to the appropriate person within the Pine Street Neighbors and Woodland Terrace Homeowner's Association.