Excavation work appears imminent for the residential building at 204 South 12th Street in Washington Square West, Center City. Designed by Bower Lewis Thower Architects and Roger Stirk Harbour + Partners, the development will feature 448 rental units and three stories of retail. The 445-foot-tall, 32-story tower will make a dramatic impact on the Philadelphia skyline when viewed from numerous angles, while white and orange highlights will give the building a unique look. The building was developed by Midwood Investments and Development, which will feature three stories of retail and 448 rental units.
The building was proposed in August 2020, eliciting pushback from some NIMBY groups. In November 2020, permits were filed for demolition, which was projected to start in the coming weeks. Development watchers were treated to a surprise in February when the demolition was rapidly underway.
By May, the site was mostly flattened and cleared, with crumbled brick scattered around and three boom lifts on the site. Flashing forward to this month, hardly any work has been made in over three months. Brick still seems to be piled in the same locations as it was in May, but the clutter in the middle in the site has been further cleared, along with the boom lifts. A backhoe loader has been sighted at the site, presumably to remove the brick in preparation for excavation.
Construction is anticipated to begin this quarter and continue for another 31 months.
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Perhaps the delay may have been the result of lack of funding?
My other speculation is that the developer may be making an effort to implement improvements to address the NIMBY pushback?
Early protests over the construction of the high-rise were over a mural that was painted on a building that occupied the site. Builder said he would pay for a new mural and incorporate into construction but that didn’t make protesters happy. Builder was in a no win situation.