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June 07, 2004

Comments

i have thought long and hard about the future of the 215 as a whole.i am convinced that the proposed buildings would do more for the image of philadelphia,but we also need to attract forward thinking companies,forums.coventions etc. We need to get major recording companies,film companies,theme parks to truly make Philadelphia a destination instead 0f a stopover location. I have a different vision but i am sure thousands share my passion about where we live. In closing,akk this can be done if we keep taxes,fee's parkingcosts to a minimum and make walking thourofare's a premium.

I feel it isn't the course of building new skyscrapers that is the problem of no employements, but is the lack of education in are average society. These buildings wont bring in people from other cities to take jobs away from us, but will improve the popularity of the nations birth place once more. What this city could use is a more upscale and more multi-culture strip of shops and restraunts then the run down south street (which is loved by all). After all, ratings have shown that our weakest problem is night life and flavor. I LIVE PHILLY.

I believe that these structures would significantly beautify the aesthetic views of this city. It would be truly wonderful to the image of Philly! It is definitely a long time in coming.

With NYC becoming more increasing expensive, and more NYr's coming to Philly to live, I believe that this would be a perfect opportunity to be a city of residential skyscrapers; kind of a overflow to the unaffordability of living in NY.

Incorporating beautiful, art-deco styled buildings that would complement the existing buildings....and structures. As we "speak" Donald Trump has placed designs for a waterfront project about 50 stories tall. Another 40-50 story residential property has been planned near the Art Museum. Along with other waterfront designs that are on the drawing board, added to the WTC of Philly. We will never rival dowtown and Midtown Manhattan in the total package, but we could replicate alot of the things that they do in quality of life. No doubt we could eventually surpass Boston and Washington as places to live.

In reviewing the other comments, I really believe that we are "not" a world class city, ut we have world class architecture and designs that are in this city that need to be emphasized. However, within 15-20 years could easily become a world class city, rivaling Chicago, San Fran, Boston or DC.

1) Penn's Landing should be developed where there are key residential developments along the span of the waterfront. Columbus Avenue should be changed into a splendid boulevard with a light rail system. The system could loop from one end of the Delaware-South Philly to Penn Treaty park area...and then loop back again. Added night life can be added to the residential life in the area, and create a whole new excitment to this district-along with the planned casinos

2) Philadelphia Naval Yard- could be transformed into a Baltimore Inner Harbor type development. The Navy base is a natural attraction for families, add to this restaurants, sports bars (e.g. ESPN Zone) and retail space in the Warehouses that are currently on the properties; incorporate water sport type rides (paddle boats, sailboats, jet skis, and a tourist type speed boat (e.g NYC South Street Seaport)to go up or down the river could increase tourism. Connecting this project to the Sports Complexes, people could hypothetically leave the Waucovia or the Phillies and go right "next door" and have a great day. This would add significant tourism dollars.

3) Incorporate a new outlet shopping district in Manyunk! The old warehouse district is currently vacant, and adding significant development of shopping retail would bring significant tourism/shopping dollars to the city from New Yorkers who would travel south to save money, and Balti-DCers traveling north. It would be close to the King Of Prussia malls, and would be attractive alternatives to the shopping there. (Sort of like Reading VFC Outlets)

4) Emphasis on redevelopment of the North Philly and South Philly Brownstones. The new Low cost housing developments are nice, but they are out of place. They look too suburban in the urban setting. They would look better in the Northeast or near the airport. However, the money achieved through the new tax base from the developments could be translated into the inner city, and "gentrify" these neighborhoods, as was done in Boston and NYC. The crime problem would begin to go away, as the neigborhoods become more "urbane".

5) Transportation infrastructure is lacking. Investing in more subway lines, converting old Reading railroad lines into Light Rail surface stations, or looking at the proposed lines of a century ago, and adding a few light rail systems could reduce the amount of traffic flow in and out of the city. Most of the people coming into the city are coming from the suburbs, and Jersey, so it would bode well to look at improved access from South Jersey (more than just one Patco line, and other surburban lines into Philly CBD.

6) Lastly, investing in the cultural components of the city that do not already exist.

> South Philly, more Italian restaurants
> China town, increase of restaurants and safer streets, adding a Canal Street Type area for outdoor markets
> The Old City with the Old cultural landmarks, invest in a Project near the waterfront that would look like what Penn's Landing looked like in the 16th century...add high end stores to go into the "strip mall" type development. (These are being developed today in "everytown" USA. Incorporate someone like Magic Johnson to bring smaller developments into the regional areas like Jersey, Delaware County as he has done accross the country)

> Open a Amusement Park near Valley Forge Park that would be similar to Williamsburg, VA to increase tourism and hotel space in the 202 corridor.

These would be idea for the next generation of Philly!!!

The building at 20th and Market is going to be THE MURANO - a high-tech, tall, and rather pricey condo tower. Apparently the groundbreaking is going to be in January. It sounds like a "go."

anyone know whats going to be built on 20th and market. ive herd rumers about that empty lot.

Philly goes to sleep after 5pm? Really, I didnt know that... Thats because it doesnt. You have to remember that Center City has two sides... West of Broad and East of Broad... The West side is where most of your Commercial Office space is... Yes Market street West of Broad is kinda desserted after dark, but then so is some parts of Lower Manhatten... Its where people work so aftre say 7pm theres really nobody there. But then on the other hand the west side of Chestnut, Walnut and Locust have tons of nightlife... Plenty of restaurants, stores and apartments give the west side south of Market a good ambiance.

Now on the east side... well come on this is where the thrust of Phillys Commercial Sevice sector is, between Broad and Delaware and Race to South is jumping at night...especially in the Spring, Summer and Fall. Theres to much going on in this area to even begin to list it here. So if you think Philly goes to sleep at 5 well maybe the fact is that you are the one asleep.


As far as Phillys Subway system goes, as much as Id like to see a system like the one that was planned in 1912; I wont hold my breath. The 1912 plan in addition the BSS and The MFL was to be a Ben Franklin PKWY line that would terminate in a Downtown loop under 16th, Locust, 8th, and Arch Streets. Parts of this loop were built under 8th Street and Locust Stret, but this trackage is now used by the Patco line to Jersey. Under the Art Museum the line was to split with one branch going out to Roxborough via Henry Ave and the other Branch going to Overbrook via Girard and Lancaster Aves. Branches of The BSS were to be a line up the Roosevelt Blvd to oxford circle then continuing up Castor Ave to the Bustleton area. A branch was also planned for Germantown Ave out to Bethlehem Pike. The MFL was to have a branch down to Darby vis Woodland Ave and a branch to Front and Oregon via Delaware and Front. So you see Philly did have the vision, she just didnt have the money that NY and Chicago had... But remember that these two cities also didnt have to pay on 40 Million dollars worth of Bonds... Yes this is the amount Philly spent on City Hall(in turn of the century dollars) This kinda put a halt to any more rapid transit building... Were lucky the Broad Street line was built at all. The Best we can hope for now is maybe a line up Roosevelt Blvd branching off the BSS somewhere around Hunting Park and converting the Chestnut Hill West line into a surface Branch of the BSS...

But, since this is a forum about Phillys vertical challenges Ill say this... Build them... The more scrapers thier are the better the City will be.

I'm not sure where you have been for the past few years but Philadelphia does not close at 5 pm. Forbes ranked Philly #4 in nightlife this year. Is it Midtown Manhattan? Absolutely not, but who is. Keep in mind that center city philly 15 years ago looked like 1944 Berlin.Center City has made great strides in the past 15 years and continues to evolve towards the positive. There's more than an acceptable amount of street life right now and it's going to get better and better.

The Comcast and Cira towers will add 3000-4000 jobs to the city when it's all said and done. Many of those will choose to live in cc. Add the 2 to 3 dozen new condo towers, 15,000 new people in the next 3 to 4 years and you have the makings of great downtown.

Building sensational buildings is great for improving Philly's image. However, there is major infrastructure that is lacking:

1) The points of entry and exit between I-95 and I-76 and the city are horrific. If these skyscrapers increase volume, the resulting gridlock will be a disaster.

2) I-76 is the equivalent of a rural side road carrying 2 million commuters daily. If I-76 is to become decompressed, it will have to become at least a 4 lane highway.

3) As mentioned by many others here, public transportation in Philly is pathetic. Not only are the subway lines insufficient, but the entire system is uninviting and scary.

4) Crime is a major deterrent to any growth of this city. Maybe we should hire Rudolph Guliani for 4-8 years.

5) As opposed to NYC's image of the "city that never sleeps", Philly goes to sleep after 5 pm. How exciting can any city be if everything is dead after hours?

6) Cleanliness. It is obvious to anyone who lives here or just visits, that "Philthy" is the city that just stinks.

It will take much more than a few big towers to make our beloved Philly a class act.

There's nothing better than new building in Philadelphia. What I absolutely hate is people using our proximity to NY in order to show or otherwise prove our significance on the international (national) stage. Sure, NY is close. So is Dover, so is Harrisburg-what's the point? The mentality of this city needs to be changed from "we're close to NY" to "NY is close to us". People are getting sick and tired of the poor urban planning of NY, the claustrophobic feel, the traffic, the arrogance. Give it time, and I promise you that Philadelphia will be THE destination for business, media, tourism and residents.

And yes, we should annex Camden. Probably Darby, Abington, Bensalem, Cheltenham, Lower Merion and Upper Dublin as well. If we annexed everything around us like Houston and Phoenix, we'd be growing at 5% + like them.

I think the new towers will be great for the city and the east coast. But as to the actual completion of these projects, i'm not so sure. Many of the ones i've read about have no projected completion dates. another point i wanted to make is that they should put some type of retail space in the comcast tower to attract regular people, not just business, maybe a mall or a restaurant or a club or something.

Germantown, Mount Airy, West Oak Lane, Roxborough or the souther part of the city (south philly, south west)?

They all have regional trains which are 1000 times better than the EL.

can't do the walking? come on yo, it's better for your heart yo.
And let's not forget it'll help you keep those calories off yo.
Or at least a few of them. ;)

I agree. I am very excited about the new comcast building being built downtown and the buildings going up of the penns landing area. I was born and raised in the philadelphia area and philly DEFINETLY NEEDS a complex subway system.

IM very proud of my city...If one thinks about it we actually only have 2 subway systems the EL train and the Orange line (broad street line). THe el train (market frankford line) services a portion of west philly, downtown and the far easter portion of the city. And the orange line, just broad street. WHat about the residents who live on the western part of the city, Germantown, Mount Airy, West Oak Lane, Roxborough or the souther part of the city (south philly, south west)? We have to endure packed bus rides just to get to the subway. I dont even want to talk about my fellow philadelphians who live in the northeast. I dont even know how they even get downtown daily. The El train is so far away. :)

As a Close-by neighbor of Philadelphia, I am glad that I can also put my two cents worth in. It's Long Overdue that Phila starts really stepping further into the 21st century with proposals of huge skyscrapers. It is not just in them, alone that progress will transpire, but from these buildings actually geting built, and not just keeping them on the drawing boards, the city, will show it CAN, and WILL make room for Real CHANGE, Finally!!! Why haven't people realized this city's futuristic potential, before? Unfortunately, that all-too-old, small-minded, antiquated, and corrupted way of thinking, mostly from the city's higher-ups, have for far-to-long, hurt it in too many ways that have had an ill affect. I've dreamed that Phila would build and do it some more; not needlessly, but it's a necessity! This is the 4th or 5th largest city in the U.S., 2nd largest on the east coast, but it has suffered from major underdevelopement and poor planning, as well as not enough vision. This city is the most overlooked,overshadowed,and yet, it is also, the most unique city in America; American, naturally, as our beaken, yet so European, in it's cultural-historical appearance. Look at the Parkway, the statues, and the fountains, alone, not to mention anything else, which makes it so different. These buildings will only add to and enhance the positive things that lready exist. Good for Phlly, to see the positives that override the negatives! Oh the possibillities!!! Looking forward to this future progress to come and be a REALITY.

Just a note to mention, with the renaming of West River Drive to Martin Luther King Junior Drive, Philadelphia now has the most scenic stretch of road anywhere in the U.S. named after the slain civil rights leader!

Great for Philly.

Hey I just moved to Philadelphia a few months ago and let me say its the best thing I ever did! "I like my city" is putting it mild. I do think the city needs to have 2 more sub lines if it wants to make it more walkable. I mean this is easily one of the most walkable major cities...so why discourage that by building so many parking lots. What gets me the most are parking lots in front of stores. Yuck. Well usually stores like that are cheaply made. Also are put up for the city to make a quick buck. Soon enough Philadelphia will turn that around and yank'em down. Love it here.

i love philly ive lived here all my life. theres no place like it. i think we need to show the u.s. we are major players in this game forget ny forget chicago we need to be at the forefront of it all it will bring people here as well as buiness which = $

Philadelphia is finally starting to look world-class. Not that it wasn't world-class, but it always was, even though we're overshadowed by NYC, Boston, and DC in tourism and business. I was thinking if the skyscrapers were built in the 70's rather than the 90's, but the pictures and the views I experienced were magnificent, like a bunch of diamonds piercing the sky. We need to come up as a major player in America. I've even heard that Baltimore was getting a subway system built all over the city. We don't even have that type of system in this city. That's really the only thing that's hurting us, not to mention the fact that we're not really diverse as NYC, Boston, and DC in terms of people and immigrants. Those would be the only things I would REALLY change about this city.

As a resident of Tampa, I have to say that I have visited Philly recently (actually Sept 2003) and stayed in Center City near Rittenhouse Sq. I must say that my impression of the city was most favorable. The weather was quite civilized at that time of year compared to heat of tampa. It was warm, dry and sunny, and made walking around extremely pleasant. It was the walking that I found so fantastic. Compared to car-enslaved Tampa, Philly was an absolute jewel of a city. So walkable, so interesting (I loved to 200 year old buildings next to the 100 year old buildings next to Art deco buildings, next to the 10 year old buildings, ..etc.) Nothing like it in the SunBelt. People from Philly should realize that valuable asset they have in their city. I love real urban areas. Tampa is an urban wasteland, Philly has got it in spades. Oh they are building here, but always the dull and suburban-esque. It all adds up to a boring experience. But in Philly, there is all that great density and complex urban fabric.

Philadelphia is certainly undergoing a decent transformation and its about time. I expect that more office towers will go up eventually, and bring much needed business to the city being one of the largest in the US. Philly also seems to be taking somewhat a "hollywood" turn also, which can only enhance the city. Philadelphia needs this kind of presence among major cities. Also, the Wi-Fi access points throughout the city is something fantastic that every Philadelphia should be proud of. It will give the less fortunate and the more fortunate the same internet capabilities instead of one person having it all! There are a few things that have to change in Philly: 1. city management, 2. Philadelphia needs at least two more public transportation lines. Septa is awful! Since it controls Southeastern PA then it can pretty much do what it wants. There needs to be a competitive public transportation system or systems/market in the city to levy out Septa. Philly needs that "yesterday". 3. More urban revitalization projects. While the city is getting a face lift and a "new contract on life" so to speak, the urban areas are just deteriorating. There needs to be a greater police presence and stiffer crime laws escpecially gun crimes. 4. lower the real estate taxes in the city. It can be done without hurting the purse because its being done now. It will only hurt the politicians, not the city ;) Philly has great things in store. I think the crowning jewel will be the World Trade Center Towers on the waterfront when that project begins.

Philadelphia only has a high crime rate because its one of the most populated cities in North America. I'm originally from upstate ny where crime is sometimes 3-5 times greater then Philadelphia. I will admit we need a metro line that hits the northwest and the southwest. I don't have any personal complaints with the train stops because I live next to the market/frankford line.

The improvements to center city are always welcomed. However, what about the neighborhoods in center city. True, Center city has never looked better (well within the last 20 years or so), but look at once beautiful neighborhoods like those in Northeast Philadelphia that are now going the way of the Dodo. Oxford Circle, Mayfair, Holmesburg, Tacony, Burholme, they are all falling apart because they lack the support and the funding from down town. Another contributing problem to these neighborhoods seem to be the recent rise in home purchases by New York Orientals who wish to turn these once family oriented homes into rentals. The houses are not being kept up as rentals, and unfortuntaley the renters are of a lower class. This has inturn created a downward circle in which these renters are forcing other residents to sell their homes, allowing more New York Orientals to buy these homes and rent them, bringing more lower class renters. In 5-10 years Center City may look beautiful, but the surroundings neighborhoods will be no better than the worst areas of Camden.

I think Philadelphia is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. As the birthplace of America, Philadelphia has to continue to add more prestige. The new additions to the city will only enhance our city's reputation. Personally I think Philadephia is better than any other city in this country. The new building will not only attract more business, but more people, and money. As only student I see great things for this city. And a dream I have to build a building myself. As a Philadelphian I have great love for this city, and our skyline is already well-known lets just make it even better.

Im happy that philly is getting new residential towers. i hope that it will bring more jobs to the city to. All those people that have negative impressions on this city, go somewhere else with all your negativity. Phillys finally trying to do better. Go live in crime ridden D.C.

i agree to a certain extent with "Robin Hood's" statement that the residents are the only people that can make our neighborhoods better. but there in lies our problem: look at the neighborhoods that we're talking about. the majority of philly is full of dilapedated builings (residential and commercial) and asinine people that shoot themselves on the weekends (refer to the nightly news and you'll understand). you can't fault anyone who wants to move out of this city - the neighborhoods are trash, the residents are trashy, and the taxes we're forced to pay support these low lives.

Dumping money into areas that already have money only helps people with money. These skyscrapers are not for the common man. If the argument is that it will bring jobs, than you haven't had to look for a job in a while. The market is saturated with the unemployed and if "drawing people from NYC, DC and NJ" will really happen, then finding a job just became impossible. The city, through city wage tax, is pulling off a reverse Robin Hood. It steals from its residents (wage tax) and throws it to these corporate wolves (no tax) who promise to make the city a "Powerhouse of the east coast", I don’t see it. "Outside investment" sends the money back "Outside". We need "Inside investments" to make the city livable so that the residents move back and are willing to spend the extra money (wage tax) to come back. The residents are the only people that can make YOUR neighborhood better. I see everyone saying that they don't want to be "Blue Collar", but face it, Philadelphia is "BLUE COLLAR AND PROUD".

The reason Philly can't grow is because everyone in power is trying increase their bank acct instead of doing whats best for the city like fix Septa repave streets and keep the city clean.

yes, the improvement on the city's skyline will be a beautiful one. and the job market will be improved as well, but will these structures bring in job-seekers from other cities? probably not. the rest of Philly is disgusting. whichever direction you're coming from, you're riding through an ugly area - whether you're in a car or a train, you see Filth-adelphia in all it's glory. so even if we can attract people from outside Philadelphia, trains from NY, DC & Baltimore still run through "real Philly." and as other posts have mentioned, Philadelphia still has an intimidating criminal profile.

overall, i think that the restructuring of center city is a good thing, but i know that it's going to take a whole lot more than half a dozen new buildings in an already nice area to fix our slum of a city. (starting with respectable city leaders)

I live in the Temple area of North Philly. These good looking buildings are going to a great addition for the city. Finnaly bring philly to a top 3 that it deserves. Also the city needs a few new subway lines to connect the more flashy destinations like pat's/geno's, manyunk, and the college campuses.

I currently live in Camden Nj. Personally I think Camden is a better place to live than Philadelphia. In Camden you have a battle ship, Aquarium, and crack dealers on every corner. Comcast should build their new skyscraper where the old RCA building was and maybe then camden will get the finally get the respect it deserves. Now if you can excuse me im going to get high.

I recently moved near LA & love it here. I also miss downtn Philly bit too much. Its a mini NY w/ the much less hastle. ALl this activity will be great for Philly, however, will create traffic problems on the poor freeway's that are not so greatly planned. After driving in other major cities that are far smaller than Philly I can surely say that, when driving anywhere in Philly area let alone downtwn feels like driving in the smallest city/metro area in the country. Shame on PennDot! Need to hire experienced engineers from CA or even NJ. SEPTA eventually will go bankrupt if they continue raising fares like maniacs. Everyone wants to drive there flashy cars w/the Bose systems to get from A to B...not public transportation so screw all the promotion on "Ride Smart" & spend more on freaking roads!!!

Philly taxes are high but their impact on the city's health are overstated. NYC's got a similar tax rate for high earners (above 4%) on top of a state tax rate that can run twice as high as pennsylvania's. This all on top of the fact that manhattan apartment/office rent is a good 50% to 100% higher than philly center city. In my view, people will pay up if they feel they are getting a unique amenity base. In NYC, you get the best of everything. Safe streets that are alive at 10PM on a tuesday night. People have to feel they're getting something for their taxes in Philly besides unsafe streets.
-Dave

Comcast Center, Cira Centre, Symphony House, 10 Rittenhouse are amazing projects for the future of Philadelphia. Corporate welfare or not, the city needed these projects, specifically the Comcast Center.

Estimates are that there will be an increase of 12,000 very wealthy residents in Center City within 3 years. The plans for University City are encouraging to say the least. For the first time I can ever remember the momentum and optimism for Philadelphia is going in the right direction.

I would love to see a 45-50 story mixed retail/office/residential tower and slightly smaller-sized adjacent hotel go up along the new Schuylkill River Trail which would help merge Center city and University City. It would trigger alot of activity in the no-mans land from 19th st to 30th St. The Philadelphia Hilton Riverwalk has a nice ring to it.

It may also be time to think about introducing the idea of building a vertical architecurally enhanced landmark to show that Philadelphia wants to make a statement on a worldwide level.


I'm originally from the DC area and transferred to Drexel in 03. When I first came here I was shocked by how much bad areas there are and the lack of public transportation. I have over 2 years changed my attitudes and I'm actually thinking of staying when I graduate in the fall.

But two make this city better and attract busineses and stop the migration to the suburbs the city first must get rid of the corrupt city gov't especially Mayor Streets. He and the situation that Philly is in kind of reminds me of Mayor Barry and DC in the late 80's, early 90's and the corruption and the overall appearance of DC. Once he left and a new administration came in the city has comeback to life and is flourishing.

That is what Philly must do get rid of this Administration and have new young blood pumped in that actually wants to see the city thrive. Like others have said the city must reduce crime, lower the tax rate(that is very important if you want to attract business to move from DC and NYC) and create a real public transit, first fix the budget problem with SEPTA but create more subway lines that better connects the city.

I believe that the new Comcast Centre will help Suburban Station become a clean and attractive train station again. I believe this building will help Philadelphia have a better icon than Liberty Place because Comcast cable is known all over the country. However, when I travel across the country I tell people I am from Philly. They think the city skyline still looks like it does back in 1985. This is because no one travels to Philly for buisness. Once Comcast has its new building complete, buisness people will travel to Philly and see the city for the first time since the 1980's. This will help spark a little more buisness downtown.

I think nothing matters in Philly like the crime issue and, unfortunately, making the area look nice won't do it. As NYC police commissioner Ray Kelly has said, 'Redevelopment is an issue as far as keeping crime down,' but not the instigating factor.

'Would you be doing rebuilding in those areas if crime wasn't down?' he asked rhetorically." (taken from a Philly Inquirer article).

The basic fact is this: The whole city of Philadelphia has a higher homicide rate than Central Harlem (at least, last I checked the 28th precinct.) -- where the homicide rate fell by 82%. And this is not because of "gentrification"

Born and raised in North Philadelphia [for the real estate people -- a 'red line' neighborhood] i've seen my fare share of what corperate development (i.e. Temple University) can do; it can have negative ramifications on an area, but the good always outways the bad. New office buildings and residental towers are a would be a good asset to Philadelphia's economy. Of course there will be competiton with other surrounding-partially full-buildings for a while, but it will calm down eventually. Besides, competition is great for any economy.
Commenting on one post's statement,--Philadelphia is a beautiful, walkable city that is 60 minutes on Amtrak from midtown Manhattan.-- I would have to agree. Philadelphia is a stone's throw away from NYC, also Northern New Jersey and Baltimore-Washington Metro Area. The developers of the Cira Center had that in mind when building at that particular site--job are actually moving from Manhattan and the Baltimore-Washington area to Philadelphia's Cira Center. I think building new office towers would be a great thing for Philadelphia..."If you build it, they will come" and when they come, they will need somewhere to live; the new residential towers are not only beautiful, but are also a good idea. I will question some of the locations, but the gestures of new towers are great.
As far as the crime rate, neighborhood development inititives are in progress -- better neighborhoods will have lower crime rates. If anyone is interested, look up the Norris Square Development Inititive. Half the neighborhood is in shambles and the other half if presentable; the plan is to combine both sides to create a safe cohesive environment and the process is working. Housing is being built, recreational centers, Schools, Libraries etc... are being built and with that, crime rates are lowering also.
I have high hopes for Philadelphia's economic future.
Speaking as a Philadelphia resident, I would love to see these building be built; as i stated at the beginning of this post i live in North Philadelphia, but the skyline has changed for me already. Before, if i would look out my door and to the south, all i would see is train tracks and weed-trees, now, rising above all of that is the new Cira Center and it is beautiful--its very inspirational.
Speaking as a Landscape Architect/Urban Designer, all i have to say is...isn't 975 feet kind of an extreme for Philadelphia's small Central Business District (downtown)? A 975 foot tower is kind of "Chicago-esque" if you ask me.
This question is JUST FOR A LAUGH: How many people think Camden, N. J. should be annexed by Philadelphia so it can get the attention (i.e. MONEY) that it needs for redevelopment and revitalization?

I lived in West Philly for a few years as a grad student and now work for a real estate investment firm. My two cents:
1) New development may be good for the city in theory but this new development is an eggregious case of corporate welfare (to Liberty Property Trust & Comcast) paid by a city that can ill afford it.
2) Philadelphia is a beautiful, walkable city that is 60 minutes on Amtrak from midtown Manhattan. But, no amount of economic development dollars or boosterism will attract any significant growth until people feel safe there. Philadelphia's homicide rate is outrageously high by national standards.
-Dave

I will be creating a photographic record of the construction of the new Comcast tower with an architectural lense, parallel correction , and will collect copies of any articals about the building. If anyone sees anything in print I would appriciate a reference about it.

I am so excited about the new Comcast Center. It's about time we start to play with the big boys. I don't want our city to be looked at as a blue collar city anymore. This city is long overdue for these buildings and the boom of residential and commercial growth. The 1441 Chestnut St., The 17th and Vine project are the the two that I can't wait to see go up. I hear that the Ritz Carlton has a residential 850 ft. tower proposed for 2009. If anyone knows, please post some info on the World Trade Plaza. As for Deleware Ave, I believe there are 3-4 new 300 ft. high rise buildings going up.

No more stalemate people, we are big time, think BIG!!!

Well - FINALLY!! That Comcast and Liberty Property Trust are going to go ahead with construction of a 975 ft. tall world-class (and the largest) new office tower on the east coast (outside of NYC) is just fantastic. The self-centered business owners in some of our other towers will just have to press Philadelphia government on such things a business tax cuts, breaks, incentives and the like to create more (and new) jobs. It's very interesting to note that, along with the new Cira Centre, which is already taking a beautiful, mirrored shape on our skyline, 3 new, tall and just plain beautiful residential buildings/complexes are now on the drawing boards. I believe all 3 will be built NOW that Comcast is here to stay: Growth breeds growth, and Philadelphia is very likely back on it's way to becoming the world-class city many of us more enlightened individuals feel is can and will be.

The proposed skyscrapers and World Trade Center for Philadelphia are long overdue. Philadelphia should not be looked upon as a "blue collar" industrial city alone, but and eastern powerhouse second to NY. The buildings will not only bring jobs, but enhance and attract business to Philadelphia, such as film agencies, corporations, etc. The ones who stand against these proposals are the old-minded who prefer to have the city left behind with no progression. These projects should continue full speed ahead as Philadelphia continues its overhaul to become a class city. I propose two 70 story office towers and resident buildings down the University of Penn/Drexel area. Also Philadelphia should continue to develope North and South Broad streets. Lets make Philadelphia worthy and beautiful and make jobs for the common folk!

I wonder whats being built at delaware ave that I see two towers cranes up.

I look forward to watching the construction of the new Comcast tower, as the Cira center now looks to be almost entirely finished on the exterior (the interior is still merely exposed steel). I hope that within 10 years Philadelphia will be seen as a great eastern power, not the decaying slum that it currently is. However, the city government needs to wake up and realize they will have to cut taxes to bring in the businesses to fill these towers. I recently moved out of the city because I cannot afford 5% of my annual income coming out of my paycheck to live in the city. If it were only 1 or 2%, I would definitely stay for the convenience. Aside from that, the high gross receipts tax on businesses and the additional 1% sales tax hinders retail and commercial development. The city needs to realize that by cutting these taxes, in 5 or 10 years there would be more than enough growth to make up the revenue, and we could continue to reverse the downward spiral in the city's ghettos.

I love it when others complain about possible comptetion to their investments. The current skyscrapers of Philadelphia are protesting these new structures by keeping the lights out in their buildings at night to take away the beauty of our skyline. They are upset because they are having trouble maintaining the occupancy in their current buildings. Survival of the fittest. So don't blame your occupancy problems, or lack thereof I should say, on new construction. New construction not only creates jobs for the unions and builders, but attracts those companies from the suburbs that you were unable to attract. And as for your current occupants who might want to relocate to the newer structures, how about spending a little money on making them stay? Advanced technology, newly remodled offices, and all other extra incentives that the new buildings will have. Kinda reminds me of the T.O. situation. He just didn't want to go to Baltimore. He wanted to come here to Philly. So if we don't build the new office space, you think comcast and alike will just say "okay, we will move in to Libery one".(?) Guess again. And next time, if you want to avoid the competition, ... buy the parcel that might be developed before they do. Just like gas stations do when they occupy the only gas station at a four way intersection...if they have the cash, they buy the other three corners and lease the space to anyone will to build anything other than a gas station. bottom line, be proactive, not a crybaby

I think the proposed new Comcast tower - along with the added NEW JOBS and ancillary cash -increase to the central Philadelphia area because of the addition of 2000+ new jobs in the tower - are a big positive for Philadelphia, not to mention the addition of a significant and very attractive new structure to the skyline.

Other than New York City, Philadelphia is the only city on the east coast with a significant skyline, adding these buildings would only enhance the beauty of our center city skyline! Lets do it!

I think all of these buildings will help change Philadelphia. I hope all these buildings are build.

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