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La Colombe Relentlessly Advances Toward Old City

The fast-growing local chain has another sizable cafe on the way.

A rendering of the upcoming La Colombe on Independence Mall, with its entrance at Sixth and Market.
A rendering of the upcoming La Colombe on Independence Mall, with its entrance at Sixth and Market.

Coffee conquistador Todd Carmichael has set his sights on Old City for the latest expansion of his La Colombe empire. With partner J.P. Iberti, he'll open a 1,700 square-foot cafe at the base of the Dow Chemical Building, at Sixth and Market streets.

That's just across the street from the Liberty Bell on Independence Mall, and steps away from Independence Beer Garden, which opened this summer. No opening date has been announced more specific than "2015."

While 1,700 square feet is downright runty compared to La Colombe's recently opened Fishtown flagship (which has been cited as anywhere from 11,000-15,000 square feet in total, though the actual coffee shop space is only a portion of that), that's still a pretty roomy cafe. And there will be even more room to spread out in the warmer months, as this location will feature outdoor seating.

In the days before neighboring Independence Beer Garden's opening, owner Michael Schulson told Eater that he eventually hoped to expand his outdoor bacchanalia to wrap around the other side of the building. It seems that La Colombe's own bank of al fresco tables would interfere with any such growth plans.

Philly-based La Colombe now has locations in New York, Washington D.C., Chicago, and South Korea, with plenty more on the way: Earlier this year, Carmichael announced plans for "upwards of 100 new cafes" over the next five years.

La Colombe Old City, 100 South Independence Mall West (at Sixth and Market), opening next year.

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