Old City – Old City is a neighborhood in Center City, Philadelphia, in the area near the Delaware River where William Penn and the Quakers first settled. To tourists, it is best known as the site of Independence Hall and its encompassing Independence National Historical Park, Elfreth’s Alley, Carpenters’ Hall, the Betsy Ross House, and many of Philadelphia’s other historic sites.
The Old City District occupies several blocks between Front and Sixth Streets, bounded by Vine Street to the north and Walnut Street to the south. The Philadelphia Almanac and Citizens’ Manual gives a larger set of boundaries to the Old City area, defined as the area within Spring Garden Street, 4th Street, the Delaware River, and Walnut Street. The Old City Redevelopment Area is bound by Vine Street, the Delaware River, Lombard Street and 7th Street.
The Old City Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1972. In 2003, it was added to the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places.
Old City is home to the oldest continually inhabited street in America, Elfreth’s Alley, Home to more than 3,000 people since 1702, the street today holds 32 houses built between 1728 and 1836.
Old City is one of the city’s popular nightlife destinations, with lounges, dive bars, and quality restaurants, mostly along the three blocks from 3rd and Market streets to Front and Chestnut streets. The 3rd Street Corridor, between Market Street and Vine Street, is home to galleries, boutiques, and other locally owned businesses. Landmark Theatres operates three Ritz movie theaters in the area that specialize in art films. During the popular monthly First Friday event, shops hold evening-hours open houses featuring art, design, and fashion. Since 2010, tech firms have moved to the area as well.
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