Philadelphia's Lost Waterfront
Pier 3 Condominium
On your right is the Pier 3 condominium complex. Keep walking while I tell you about it.
The city built the underlying piers of Pier 3, and Pier 5 next-door, in the 1920s as municipal warehouse wharves. They both extend about 550 feet into the Delaware River, which is as far as federal law allows.
The development came right at the zenith of Philadelphia’s maritime activity. But the Great Depression began the slow elimination of port operations along the central waterfront.
The two city-owned piers lingered on for decades. Then, in the 1980s, developers began converting the structures into residences. Sales were slow at first, but by 1994, all units were sold, as the notion of living by the Delaware became appealing.