Since 1987, when the unofficial “Gentlemen’s Agreement” that advised against building taller than City Hall was eliminated, multiple high-rises that stand well over 500 feet tall have dramatically changed the profile of Center City. The Comcast Technology Center had first joined the skyline at the very end of 2015, and now makes an incredible impact with its height of 1,121 feet and 60 stories as the tallest skyscraper in the city. Designed by Foster and Partners and developed by Liberty Property Trust, the building stands at 1800 Arch Street and houses Comcast corporate offices along with a Four Seasons hotel. In this publication, Philadelphia YIMBY looks back at the Comcast Technology Center before it topped out.
At the beginning of 2017, several beams of the tower had reached the roof at a height of 911 feet. The roof itself was finished by April. By May came, the first beams for the cooling towers were starting to go up on the west side of the roof. By the end of the month, the first section of the cooling towers was framed as the beams that hold the side walls together were starting to rise. The first section appeared complete by June, but a pause was observed for the next four months.
On August 23rd, headlines went out stating that hairline cracks were found at the very top of the structure. Out of the 5,200 welds on the top, 35 to 40 contained such cracks. Stairs were erected on the east side of the structure, and multiple rigs of tarp and scaffolding were set up in multiple areas for renewed welding. Balancing tanks that were installed in late July were taken down a month later, but were put back on in October as the welding problems were resolved, with steel work continuing on October 17th.