Tuesday, August 26, 2008

ZBA Rules Against Unisys Sign

When I decided to devote last Friday's Changing Skyline column to the saga of the Unisys sign, it looked like the zoning hearing might drag on for months. Who knew the zoning board, whose members interrupted their summer vacations for a special hearing this morning, would wrap things up so quickly. They voted to deny Unisys its request to place its name in 11-foot letters on the 38th floor of Liberty Two.
Now that they've been denied this billboard space (as well they should have), it looks like the lawyers can stop piling up briefs for the federal lawsuit. It's all moot. But it might have been an interesting, precedent-setting case that clarified the relationship between owners in mixed office-residential-retail buildings. My prediction is that there are going to be a lot more office towers converting empty floors into condo apartments.
Meanwhile, one city wag has this suggestion for Unisys: If they can't put their logo on a prestigious Philadelphia landmark, put the prestigious Philadelphia landmark on their logo. Redesign the Unisys signature to incorporate the outline of Liberty Two. Everyone wins!


Blogger Nick Boccella said...

I can't imagine there was much chance of this going through. Has Unisys taken occupancy yet, if not when are they supposed to?

Is unisys closing their blue bell/plymouth meeting campus? I heard the Malvern one is being closed.

1:03 AM  
Blogger rasphila said...

I think it was the correct ruling for the city for a lot of reasons, but Unisys is making noises as if losing the sign might be a deal-breaker. This seems pretty childish to me. As Mayor Nutter says, the discussions were never about the sign. They shouldn't have been. If relocating to the city is the right move, the loss of the sign should be irrelevant.

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I assume that Unisys has also applied to Blue Bell (home of their current HQ) for a variance to put up a preposterous, inappropriate, lighted sign 40 stories in the air, and is threatening to leave there too if they don't get it.

6:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe that there are hugh "FOR RENT" signs with a PHONE NUMBER atop the newly constructed Waterfront Square Towers -- Delware and Popular ave -- not far from the Sugar House Casino Site. How come they get away with it and not Unisys?

8:54 PM  
Anonymous Chicago-Photos said...

I still think chicago has the best skyline

3:32 PM  

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