Friday, March 07, 2008

The Next Liberty Place?

Philly's developer-dreamers just don't quit. Trinity Capital Management, which took a 75-year lease on the Girard Estate block (Market, btwn 11th and 12th) in 2006 for $90 million, has come up with the outlines of a massive development scheme that would dwarf Liberty Place. It calls for three skyscapers, a massive, Marriott-sized convention hotel, a large mall - as well as a pedestrian arcade that would cut through all the way to Walnut Street.
The tallest skyscraper, proposed for 11th and Market Street, could be taller than the Comcast Tower under the existing zoning. Unfortunately, the developer is too eager to level the site, which includes some wonderful early, 19th century skyscrapers like the Stephen Girard building, pictured here. Read all about it in Friday's Changing Skyline.


Blogger js said...

Inga, you made a good point in your Inky article about the impression convention-goers must get when they step out of Reading Terminal and look across Market. They really need to spruce up that block up, get some cool stores in there. Sorry, but City Blue and that Hallmark are not economic or cultural engines of the city.

4:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can the facade of the Stephen Girard Building be saved? Sounds like 4,000,000 square feet and 1200 room hotel will rival the WTC site in new york which is almost 3 to 4 times the size of the 11th and Market site. I think an 80 to 90 story building would be great if it is world class cutting edge architecture and is respectful of its surroundings. Has anyone else seen the plans for Market East 8th and Market and the Gallery that have been on display at Cira Center courtesy of the Center City District. A design student from Boston won first place with a remarkable plan including 7 or 8 high rises and a pathway that cuts thru the old Disney quest lot at 8th and market

10:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Like 8th & Market, developer fantasy. Won't translate into reality.

11:18 PM  
Anonymous Rob F said...

Destroying the Girard building wouldn't just be a tragedy, it would be bad business on the part of the developer. In a 300-year-old city with high taxes and crumbling infrastructure, what the heck are you selling if not our history? That's the only thing that sets us apart from places that can offer a much more favorable business environment. This is Philadelphia, not Phoenix.

Of course, the Ironworkers Union and related special interests that run things around here would rather throw up a new glass and steel monstrosity, but integrating the old and the new is the secret to success in Philadelphia. The convention center is a great example (the current addition notwithstanding) of how old buildings can be beautifuly preserved alongside new construction.

9:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No money will be lent on a project of this scale for another twenty years. You can thank the Federal Reserve, the private cartel Soviet-style central financial planning unit that took over the U.S. money supply in 1913.

11:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Couldn't they even combine the old and new in a look similar to the Hearst Tower in NYC? It is a spectacular looking building made all the better because it uses the old existing structure. This city is driving me to leave it with its complete disregard for the history and architecture that made it was it is. I've moved away twice so far and will go for good this time if structures lke the Girard Building are torn down. Sad is not the word to describe the callous attitude that is shown by too many in this city.

12:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmm, Announcement of American Commerce center 18th and Arch, Cira center buildings 30th street area, this little project. Hmm, one of the liberty place buildings going part condo, due to lack of tennents? I'm in another moderately new building with empty floors. Makes sense to me.

4:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

why don't people in philly move if they don't like progress.also, the person questioned the stephen girard bld at 11th at market. if you like it so much then fix it up. why do people care about building tall. it's wonderful. better than a empty lot with paper and trash, rats and god knows what else. market st. at 11th is a mess and convention goers can't deal with that mess of stores. its a city move and how many historic buildings do you need. the funeral home at samson had rats coming from it. inga maybe instead of critizing the city every time/ i know you are a critic engineer. what do you like. your comments isn't helping people attract to phila. i love phila. there is plenty of history left to see oh, 80 percent of the poplualtion of the metro philly. never saw it anyway. and probably. i saw the liberty bell 10 years ago and lived in the burbs for many many years. progress. like i said you and the people complaining about these empty delapidated blds start a fund and fix them up instead of stopping progress. one person stopped the 31 story at rittenhouse for how long. move thats what i saw. i hope they keep building people complained about liberty and liberty 2 and then comcast. i think that they are doing well. considering the economy and the like. who knows the future anyway with storms and so on and so forth. people complain maybe philly will be the capital again who knows for awhile anyway. new orleans is gone a good portion. did you ever think that. they say god has a plan and maybe your critizing it. why not you critize everything just about you need to change your attitude. big whoop you won an award for criticism.

6:08 PM  

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