Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Philadelphia is BACK and there's nothing you can do about it. Nothing.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

 Now THAT is a motivated developer.
                   Is there any other point in Philadelphia history when renderings for a new building could be found on a bus? This has to be a record or something. However, as silly as it seems, this is a good thing. This is a sign that Philadelphia big-ass building development is BACK. Motherfucker.
                  A buttload of construction is going on right now... more cranes in the sky at once than we had during the last boom. The new buildings aren't THAT gigantic but they are the kind of infill that the city has needed for years. Besides all the new shit going up, lots of old shit is getting renovated or about to be. Even as this has been going on, I was in denial about new shit being built in Philly--- like this was a blip.
                Well, I'm finally gonna admit to all of you that Philadelphia is BACK in the big-ass construction game and there's a shitload more to come. The newest proposals include a 27-story office building at 19th and Arch (across from apartments about to be built), a 500+ foot W Hotel, some (mediocre) waterfront stuff, and new midrises/renovations for Old City, Chinatown North, and West Philly. Also, older proposals have returned from limbo-- hence the picture above.
                On top of all that, PREIT is soon going to present its plan for the Gallery-- a $300 Million project. You could buy a skyscraper for that, so they'd better make it good... or a skyscraper. This has the potential of saving the shittiest part of Center City. Speaking of shitty parts of Center City, even Chestnut East has been showing improvement.
               Back in 2007 or so, we had so many things in the proposal, site prep, and construction stages that it was difficult to keep up with all of them. Legendary Philaphile Brad Maule organized them into a single spreadsheet called The Skinny to keep us all atitty of the situation. Well, those times are back... except without the spreadsheet. Anyone out there want to take on the task of making it?


  1. I'd be up for contributing to one, although I'd want it to be collaboratively edited. Maybe we can drag NakedCity or somesuch into this to be the overseer?

  2. found this video

  3. I think that this development push is mostly encouraging because it shows just how secular the move back to cities is. While Philadelphia's economic picture is certainly much more fundamentally sound than the rest of the country due to its primary employment drivers, large construction projects are still at the whim of large national and multinational financing entities. They clearly see the value of what it is happening now and are still putting their money on the line to (re)develop Philadelphia.

    If the overall economy improves nationally and internationally, we could see even more projects come down the pike.

  4. I threw this together this morning. It certainly needs work (i.e. linking maps, increasing automation, etc.) But I think it's a start. The idea is to keep it as crowd-sourced as possible, cause you know, I've got a job and shit. So, if you have a few minutes, enter a project or ten.

    The Philly Skinny

    And if you've got any ideas for how to make it work better, or be prettier, or if you want to help by becoming an editor, let me know.

    1. Nice!! I'll write a new post about this soon!