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Groups Seek Protection For Joe Frazier’s North Philly Training Gym

(File photo.  Credit: Jim Melwert)

(File photo. Credit: Jim Melwert)

Paul Kurtz Paul Kurtz
Paul Kurtz is a Philadelphia native who has been working as a reporter...
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By Paul Kurtz

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The North Philadelphia gymnasium in which the late Joe Frazier trained for his fights has been placed on the National Trust for Historic Preservation‘s list of most endangered historic places.

The three-story building that stands in the shadow of a railroad overpass in a grimy area along North Broad Street is now a furniture store.

It is up for sale, which makes it extremely vulnerable, according to the Brent Leggs of the NTHP.

“So if anyone wants to demolish the building, they can apply for a permit,” he tells KYW Newsradio. “If any alterations wanted to be made to the building, that could be done without any oversight from any governing agency or preservation agency.”

The Preservation Alliance of Greater Philadelphia is spearheading a local effort to save the building.

Executive director John Gallery says their options include locating a friendly buyer, “or whether there’s a group of people who are interested in Frazier’s legacy that might form a nonprofit corporation to organize a youth recreation center.”

But finding a savior could be a daunting challenge, he admits, given the building’s location.

Frazier died last year at the age of 67.

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