Philadelphia Police found 48 boxes of cremated remains inside the vacant Baker Funeral Home on Broad Street near Norris on Oct. 11, according to a PPD press release.
Police investigated the building after the Philadelphia Tribune received a tip from two self-described “urban explorers” who searched the building in March.
Micahel Alhadad, a developer, received approval from the zoning board to turn the site into a six-story, mixed-use building earlier this month. He could not be immediately reached for comment.
Adam Laver, the zoning attorney representing Alhadad, also could not be reached for comment.
Each of the boxes was attached with a death certificate, the release said, though police did not say how they would handle the remains.
The city’s Department of Licenses and Inspection issued three violations to the property on Oct. 11, including for having an “unsafe structure” and improperly storing hazardous materials.
Though the Pennsylvania Department of State cannot comment on specific complaints, “when we receive information about practices or conditions that violate professional licensing standards it is passed on to our prosecution division,” wrote Ellen Lyon, a spokesperson for the department, in an email to The Temple News.
The funeral home encountered financial difficulties for decades after repeatedly failing to file tax returns and pay taxes, the Philadelphia Tribune reported. It is unclear when they closed, according to the Tribune.