Boundaries: Broad to 11th streets, South Street to Washington Avenue
Population: 24,200 (combined with Bella Vista and surrounding neighborhoods in the 2000 Census)
Demographics: White, 67 percent; black, 12 percent; Asian, 15 percent; Latino, 6 percent
Origin of name: Residents are unsure of the name's significance, but say the city designated the area as Hawthorne.
Brief history: The area's most famous building is the former Ridgway Library. Modeled after the Parthenon, the historic structure, which now houses the High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, 901 S. Broad St., dates to 1878.
The school has turned out to be a more practical use for the building. The former library's vast size made it difficult to maintain a constant temperature, and volumes of books were damaged as a result. In 1997, the building was restored and CAPA moved in.
Lifelong resident Ebony Adams Dia says she grew up on the grounds near the Ridgway Library. "Fields and hills were located near my house, and the neighborhood children and I would run barefoot in these fields," says Dia, 57.
Dia says the community has taken a turn for the worse over the years. High-rise projects first appeared in 1963. In the late '90s, they were replaced with low-income housing units.
But residents believe improvement is on the way. The Martin Luther King housing project (once known as Hawthorne Square), 13th and Fitzwater, was imploded in 1999. From its ashes rose a community of townhomes for sale and rent to low- to moderate-income families.
In addition, the portion of Hawthorne closest to Center City is drawing a substantial amount of private investment.
Famous residents: R&B group Boyz II Men graduated from CAPA when it was located in the Palumbo Elementary building at 11th and Catharine streets.
Major landmarks: Hawthorne Cultural Arts and Recreation Center, 12th and Carpenter streets; CAPA; the former MLK high-rises
Architecture: While brick homes are scattered throughout the neighborhood, the area consists mostly of townhouses.
Median home sale price: $150,000
State Senate district: First, Vincent Fumo (D)
State House district: 182nd, Babette Josephs (D)
City Council district: First, Frank DiCicco (D)
Police district: Third
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