December 22, 2021
Fictional boxing trainer Mickey Goldmill would likely roll over in his grave if he heard about what's happening to his gym.
The Kensington building that served as the exterior home to Mighty Mick's Gym in the "Rocky" film franchise is being redeveloped into a mixed-use structure. A zoning permit for the project, located at 2145 N. Front St., was issued last week by the Department of Licenses and Inspections.
The renovated three-story building will include a 1,276-square-foot commercial space on the ground floor, four multi-family apartment units on the second and third floors and a roof deck, according to the permit.
A commercial building permit was issued in October to fix up the property's structure, exterior walls and decorative trim. The previous renovations came after the building failed a safety inspection last summer, according to the city records. The structure passed a follow-up safety inspection earlier this month.
The building where exterior shots of Mighty Mick's Gym were filmed was originally constructed in 1910, according to the superfan website Total Rocky.
In real life, the 1,624-square-foot property has been home to a number of establishments over the years, including a Dollar Plus store in the early 2000s. The building was last sold in 2014 for $190,000, according to city property records.
The building, however, was not actually where Rocky Balboa trained. Sylvester Stallone's training scenes inside the gym were filmed in a Los Angeles boxing gym.
Despite the building's location underneath the Market-Frankford Line in North Philly, Mighty Mick's was set in South Philly in the films.
Mighty Mick's was where Goldmill — played by Burgess Meredith — trained the Italian Stallion for his two fights against Apollo Creed in "Rocky" and "Rocky II."
Goldmill continued as Balboa's trainer until he died in "Rocky III." In his will, Goldmill left Mighty Mick's to Balboa and his family.
Balboa doesn't train at the gym in "Rocky III," but it is where his former opponent Creed formally offers to become his new trainer. Mighty Mick's is also nowhere to be found in "Rocky IV."
But the iconic sweatbox returned to the big screen in "Rocky V," when a retired Balboa renovates the place and reopens it to train young fighters — including his pupil Tommy Gunn. A pair of red boxing gloves that were painted as part of a mural for the movie is still visible on the building's Front Street side.
In "Rocky Balboa," the building's exterior is dilapidated, as the Italian Stallion has stopped regularly maintaining it.
However, the gym is once again restored as a training facility in "Creed." Balboa and Adonis Creed can be seen standing outside the building in the film, but the interior shots of the gym were filmed at Must Fight Boxing Club in Chester, Delaware County.