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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:00 PM   #1
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PHILADELPHIA | Projects & Construction

Philadelphia Projects & Construction

A look at recent, ongoing and future developments in the Philadelphia area.

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Philadelphia Skyline 2011 by JKEL, on Flickr
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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:01 PM   #2
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Phillydeals

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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Another Comcast tower in Center City?


The Comcast building on the Philly skyline. (Clem Murray / Staff Photographer)

A buyer affiliated with Liberty Property Trust on Aug. 3 paid $40 million for the lot at 1800 Arch St., ending a longshot proposal by developers to build what would have been the tallest building in Center City Philadelphia.

Seller Multi Employers Property Trust, a union pension investment fund, had paid $32 million in 2007. "We're glad MEPT made a nice profit," David Richter, head of Marlton-based Hill International Group's real estate affiliate, which had hoped to develop a 1,500-foot tower on the site, told me. "We would have preferred they hold onto the property. I think we're getting close to the end of the recession. But MEPT got a good offer, for the best piece of property in Center City."

Hopeful brokers I talked to said a likely occupant for a new building on that site would be its neighbor, Comcast Corp., whose Liberty-built and -managed Comcast Center headquarters, at nearly 1,000 feet, is Philadelphia's highest building. Comcast is looking for space and has leased parts of the former CoreStates and Bell Atlantic headquarters towers.

But it's not clear that Comcast would spend $50 a square foot for new construction, when existing Philadelphia office space is available at half that price. Comcast doesn't need the 700,000+ sq ft a big tower would create, and it would be tough to finance such a large project without other tenants.

Comcast has acquired plenty of legacy NBC Universal office space in other cities, such as 30 Rockefeller Center in Manhattan (though Philly brokers are hoping Comcast could move back-office NBC operations in North Jersey down here). Comcast already controls a site on its headquarters block that could accomodate maybe a 20-story tower, if it wants to build.

That leaves open the possibility that a Liberty financial partner is looking at Comcast or another potential tenant long-term, and sees this as a chance to control the site. Liberty held the site of Comcast's current headquarters a block away for years until the company was ready to commit.

The site doesn't fit Liberty's recent deals. With few big companies hiring or needing office space, Liberty has been selling office sites and buying warehouses.

But some large corporations are using the depressed property and construction market to update home offices on the cheap. For example, PNC Financial Service Group this summer announced a new 40-story headquarters in its native Pittsburgh.

A new tower would give Philadelphia contractors and construction workers relief from the three-year slump, especially since work ended on the Pennsylvania Convention Center expansion and Brandywine Realty Trust's 30th St. Post Office conversion earlier this year.

Hill plans to concentrate its future development energies on "hotel properties on the West Coast, resort properties in the Caribbean, and low-cost housing in the Third World," Richter told me. The former tower plan, dubbed American Commerce Center, was proposed four years ago by developer Joseph Grasso and promoter Garrett Miller. Hill replaced Grasso in the group two years ago. Miller left Hill in July and joined Matthew McManus' NAI Bluestone commercial real estate loan brokerage group.

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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:03 PM   #3
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Philly.com

Quote:
Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Toll Bros.' new Society Hill condo plan


A previous plan for the former NewMarket space, planned as hotel, condos and parking and called Stamper Square. (H2L2)

Homebuilder Toll Bros., of Horsham, has until Aug. 31 to exercise an option to acquire the long-vacant site of the NewMarket restaurant and retail center, between Front and Second, Pine and Lombard, on the east end of Society Hill, for a condominium development.

Toll's informal proposal, as provided to members of the Society Hill Civic Association and other neighbors in recent meetings, is for a four-story complex of 73 brick-fronted wood-frame condos, no stores or restaurants, with 90 underground parking spaces. Units would start in the $400,000 range for one-bedroom spaces. Toll hopes to start work later this year.

That's more modest than Bridgman Development's 15-story rival Stamper Square plan, for the same site, which included 150 hotel rooms, 77 condos and 350 parking spaces (details corrected).

But the Stamper proposal, opposed by some neighbors who have gotten used to the neighborhood's relative quiet since NewMarket faded in the 1980s, and delayed when financing proved hard to get after the 2008 credit crisis, depended on city zoning revisions that expired in June, Bill Kramer, division director for development planning at the city Planning Commission, tells me. The site is controlled by Larry Linksman's Bridge Funding, a New York financing firm, according to city records.

[...]
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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:04 PM   #4
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Philly.com

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Friday, September 16, 2011

SugarHouse casino expansion, Chinatown tower plans

Philadelphia City Planning Commission meets Tuesday Sept. 20, upstairs at 1515 Arch St., 1 pm. On the agenda:



- SugarHouse casino will flesh out the first of several planned expansion projects. This one will increase the size of the gambling area and the parking garage, and move entrances to allow more traffic. A hotel and other projects will be presented at a later date. This stage to be presented by Ian Cope of Cope Linder Architects. "Information only," no public discussion or planners' action.

- Chinatown Tower, a "mixed-use," 11-story, boldly-colored building, with retail stores, rental hall, nonprofit offices and up to 8 stories of apartments. Presented by John Chin, Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation, for the vacant northwest corner of 11th and Vine, formerly owned by PennDOT and the Redevelopment Authority. Also "information only," no public discussion.

- Umbria Village, by JERC Partners, 168 apartments in 16 four-story buildings, 199 parking spaces, 35 bike spaces, a 2-story clubhouse-poolhouse, at 1 Parker Avenue in Roxborough, adjacent to the Ivy Ridge Station above the old Manayunk. Smaller version of a previously approved plan. Needs planning approval before it goes to the Zoning Board.

- Navy Yard, near Tasty Baking bakery, Liberty Property Trust is dividing a 12-acre site into separate 4 and 8 acre sites for future commercial buildings.

- Closing the end of Unruh Ave. for the North Delaware Trail and Greenway Project in Wissinoming; and, separately, closing Ashland St. along Frankford Creek, which could affect a second nearby trail..


Read more: http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/i...#ixzz1YhynJTXj
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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Chinatown Eastern Tower Community Center



The Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation plans to build a 23-story, 265-foot-high residential and office tower, with a community center on the ground floor, on two parcels at the northwest corner of Vine and 10th streets. The communities strong desire for a community center prompted the project, but constructing a stand-alone center proved prohibitive, therefore the PCDC joined with private developer Teres Holdings to iron out a more solid economic plan.



Plans call for 12,000 square feet of retail space, 15,000 square feet of office space, 144 mostly rental apartments and a 23-car garage. A small charter school is a possible office tenant, and the buildings 2-story community center would include 500-person multi-function room where basketball can be played and a health center. floors 6 to 23 would be residential, with a mix of one and two bedroom units. The tower would be topped with a green roof, residences would have operable windows, and silver LEED certification would be sought.

[...]
A start date for this project has not been announced. Stay tuned...
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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:06 PM   #6
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Philly Bricks

Quote:
Saturday, July 30, 2011
Things are Looking Up on Chestnut Street




Well, at least literally.

John Buck Co. of Chicago plans on break ground in September on the 35 storey Buck Tower apartments on the site of the Sidney Hillman Medical Center.

Although Hartshorne Plunckard Architecture's glass tower pales in comparison to the diagonally positioned midcentury clinic, it will be an exciting contribution to our skyline in a time of economic uncertainty.

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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
9/30/2011

Cira Centre South



Cira Centre South has been in the works for almost 5 years now and finally it seams as though phase two of the project may actually happen. Penn Connects offerers some nice updated renderings of the planned mixed use development that will soon be the neighbor of the IRS at the former Post Office and Penn Park.



The Post Office Annex development, as presented in a preliminary design by Brandywine Realty Trust, proposes two mixed-use towers fronting on Walnut and Chestnut Streets, and a 1667-car parking garage with street level retail in the middle of the block. The now complete Parking garage will soon host its first tenants, Old Nelson Food Market and the Schulykill River Development Corporation.





[...]
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Old October 27th, 2011, 08:08 PM   #8
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PhillyShark

Quote:
10/12/2011
The Future of the Festival Pier





The Festival Pier, located at the foot of Spring Garden Street on the water front, is one of the major focal points for the revitalization of the Central Delaware waterfront. The pier currently host a long list of public events throughout the year, mostly during the spring and summer months. But all of this is soon to change, with plans of establishing Spring Garden as a greenway from the Delaware to the Schuylkill, and increasing density around and on the pier, which will drastically change the programming and use of the site. Increased density will certainly make this site a 365 destination anchored by residences, live work units, and entertainment.





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Old November 2nd, 2011, 09:04 AM   #9
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New Loft for Callowhill Rivals Expectations

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Old November 2nd, 2011, 09:05 AM   #10
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New Dranoff Development For South St. And Broad

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Old November 2nd, 2011, 09:41 AM   #11
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Sugarhouse Expansion

Quote:


Sugarhouse Casino representatives hope to build a parking garage 40 feet shorter than what was originally approved for their next phase of development, while also retaining the option to build outward instead of upward if there is the need for more parking in the future.


Deputy Mayor Alan Greenberger told the Philadelphia City Planning Commission that the administration thinks the longer retention of more surface lot space is a good trade for reducing the garage from 10 to 6 stories above an expanded ground floor casino space.

The plans the commission has already approved called for all but 10 percent of the 100,000-square-foot parking lot to disappear when the garage is built. The current plans also require SugarHouse to build the 3,200 space garage in one phase. Under this proposal it could be build in several phases, said project architect Cope. SugarHouse wants to begin with 1,500 spaces.



There were also discussions of future phases, including a hotel tower adjacent to the port-cochere and ground-floor retail and presumably residential development along Delaware Avenue. That development would be slated for the future, dependent on market conditions. The hotel would be less than 300 feet tall, respecting the current height limit, with a green roof. The expansion would ad about 600 construction jobs and 500 permanent jobs.


Phase1


Phase2


Phase3

http://phillyshark.blogspot.com/2011...expansion.html
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Old November 2nd, 2011, 09:49 AM   #12
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Hot on the heels of NYC's very successful High Line Park, Philadelphia is planning its own sky park:






http://phillyshark.blogspot.com/2011...-sky-park.html

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Old November 2nd, 2011, 09:57 AM   #13
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Quote:
Philly Live Goes Up!



The long anticipated South Philadelphia development, "Philly Live" has finally begun construction of the first phase of the project. Developers, Philadelphia-based sports and entertainment firm Comcast-Spectacor, and world-renowned developers The Cordish Company, have teamed up on this project, proposing a destination retail, dining and entertainment district at the Philadelphia Sports Complex. The 300k plus sqft. entertainment complex will host the largest sports bar in the world. The first phase will contain several restaurants, retail and the mega sports bar. Comcast Spectacor expects the construction of phase one to be complete in time for Opening Day for the Phillies in April, 2012. Construction on the rest of the project, including a hotel has not been determined and depends heavily on the economy.


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Old November 2nd, 2011, 10:07 AM   #14
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Drexel University's Masterplan Revisited



Quote:
Reinforcing Market Street As The Heart Of Campus

Construction projects on the northern edge of Market Street will center more activity in this key area and further Drexel's presence in West Philadelphia. This shift, which began with the renovation of Van Rensselaer Hall, the move of administrative functions to 3201 Arch Street, and the construction of the East and North Residence Halls, will provide a more even distribution of activity throughout the campus. The conversion of the Armory into an athletic and convocation center also will help ensure a more even distribution of campus resources, as will potential dining outlets north of Market Street.

Strengthening Drexel's North/South Connections

Development along 30th, 32nd, 33rd, and 34th streets will enliven the Campus by enhancing linkages among its warious districts and strengthening connections with Drexel's University City neighborhood.

Enhancing Student Life

Adding retail establishments, outdoor seating areas, lighting, and greenery to the streetscape will invigorate the student experience, as will new residence halls and recreational spaces.





The closing of Race Street between 33rd and 34th Streets to auto traffic, creating a safe and green pedestrian link through campus. The project is the first phase of an ambitious landscaping project to create a pedestrian mall and series of walks to connect the north residential portion of the campus to the academic core. Phase one adds new trees, lighting and seating areas along Race Street to create a pedestrian and bicycle only east/west link between 33rd and 34th streets.


Papadakis Integrated Science Building
Architect: Diamond and Schmitt
Estimated Budget: $69,000,000


LeBow College of Business Expansion
Architect: Robert A.M. Stern with VMA
Estimated Budget: $92,000,000
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Old November 3rd, 2011, 02:11 AM   #15
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any information on the childrens hospital expansion plans?

supposed to be massive. $2bn over 5 years
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Old December 5th, 2011, 06:34 AM   #16
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Wistar Institute Breaks Ground



Quote:
11/30/2011



The Wistar Institute broke ground back in late September on a major expansion project that will ensure its future at the forefront of cancer research and vaccine development. The institution is building a seven story, 89,700-square-foot research tower, which will rise above its current landmark facility designed by architects George W. and William G. Hewitt at 36th and Spruce streets in 1894. The project will enable Wistar to expand its research operations, recruit new scientific faculty and pursue collaborative biomedical research in emerging areas of science.

---

Scheduled for completion in the spring of 2014, the $100 million expansion project will support 380 construction jobs and is expected to create 100 new research and administrative jobs at Wistar in the future.







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Old December 5th, 2011, 06:51 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by thejacko5 View Post
any information on the childrens hospital expansion plans?

supposed to be massive. $2bn over 5 years
Here's an article from June about CHOP's expansion plans:

phillydeals

Quote:
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
CHOP plans million-sq-ft project at South St. site (Update)


(Revised) Children's Hospital of Philadelphia has asked builders to submit proposals for a building project almost as big as the Comcast Center or One Liberty (but not so tall), on a nine-acre site once home to a World War II-era Marine tank warehouse and a beer distributor, from South St. south along Schuylkill Ave.

CHOP is seeking plans for one million square feet of potential offices and labs at the former Springfield Beverage site, which Children's acquired last year, plus the tank warehouse that was later used as storage by the Philadelphia School District and as the John F. Kennedy vocational high school.

The vacant warehouse was gutted by developer Sam Switzenbaum for an abortive condo project before the real estate market crashed.

"It's right across the South Street bridge for our main campus. It offers us an opportunity to allow for growth, to maybe bring in some research areas we currently have in other places, closer to the main campus," Childrens spokesman George V. Bochanski Jr. told me.

"It's been vacant for years. It's been underutilized and unsightly. The neighborhood is really interested and excited about CHOP moving onto the property," Gus Scheerbaum, an engineer who heads the South of South Neighborhood Association, told me.

He said CHOP first approached the group informally in 2009 to gauge neighbors' reaction to moving some operations there from its crowded University City campus. "They are still early in the process," he told me. "Our concerns are related to traffic, pedestrian safety, street lighting," and a mix of residential and commercial use that doesn't turn an unfriendly "brick wall" to residents.

The project would fill a vacant area near the heart of a string of old-time rowhouse neighborhoods that have lately attracted expensive redevelopment. "It's a clean use. It brings a lot of employment. It will have a positive ripple effect on the neighborhood," says developer Carl Dranoff, whose projects include the nearby Locust on the Park and Left Bank apartments. Dranoff expects CHOP will seek a hotel for patient families as part of its proposal.

Nobody's mentioned a hotel to the neighbors, Scheerbaum said. "We haven't had a community meeting about this development. But there will be," he said.

Does CHOP need the whole million square feet, or will it lease space to other institutions and business uses? "We have a close association with Penn, but I don't think we have an interest in becoming a landlord for other uses," Bochanski said.
As proposals come in, the results should be extraordinary!
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Old December 8th, 2011, 06:30 PM   #18
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Drexel's new master plan is supposed to be coming out tomorrow...
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Old December 13th, 2011, 11:10 PM   #19
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phillyshark

Quote:
Dilworth Plaza Redo Begins Soon







The renovation of Dilworth Plaza, the main Gateway to City Hall, will soon get underway. The two-and-a half year construction project is stated to open some time in 2014. The currently inaccessible, multi-level, unattractive, hard-surface plaza into a sustainable, well-maintained, green public space with no stairs or barriers from the street. The new plaza will have a large lawn, tree groves, a programmable fountain and space for 400 benches and chairs. The underground will be dramatically improved as a new transit gateway, providing entrances to Broad Street and Market Street subways and the trolley lines. New elevators will make the transit levels accessible for the first time.

[,,,]








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Old December 13th, 2011, 11:13 PM   #20
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New Dance Center For The Pennsylvania Ballet

Quote:




The Pennsylvania Ballet plans to create a $17.5 million dance center on North Broad Street. The project has broken ground on a complex of five dance studios, school and offices signaling another step forward for the revival of North Broad Street. The project was greeted with open arms by the city and arts community. However The project includes the demolition of a building at 325 N. Broad that is listed on the national Register of Historic Places, and the preservation community is not joining in the applause for the project.

[...]
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