The Royal Theatre, originally built in 1919 served as the center of African American culture in Philadelphia until it closed in 1970 as a crosstown expressway which was ultimately never built threatened its very existence. The building had sat vacant for decades and fell into serious disrepair. When new developers bought the building the Preservation Alliance fought to preserve the theatre, however the auditorium was no longer viable, and only the facade could be preserved. JKRP retained the original facade and carefully incorporated it into a brand new mixed use building. The contrast of old and new springs the building back to life and reinvigorates the sleepy end of South Street.