Philadelphia City Hall 1910. Photo via

Looking at the Construction of Philadelphia City Hall’s Clock Tower

At the time of construction, Philadelphia City Hall at 1400 John F. Kennedy Boulevard in Center City was a building that was both ahead of its time and inspired by traditional design. The municipal floors and the clock tower feature stone walls, cornices, pillars, and decorative additions that brought the public to awe. The 548-foot structure was designed by John McArthur Jr. and Thomas Ustick Walter, who have both worked on other well-known buildings. John McArthur Jr. designed the First National Bank, and Thomas Ustick Walter designed the new and current dome of the Capital Building in Washington D.C. While the highest space in the building sits nine floors above ground, the clock tower stands hundreds of feet tall and was constructed just after the municipal floors. Today Philadelphia YIMBY looks at the construction of the clock tower, which ranks as the world’s tallest freestanding masonry building.

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Current view of 1729 Francis Street. Credit: Google.

Permits Issued for Four-Unit Building at 1729 Francis Street in Francisville, North Philadelphia

Permits have been issued for the construction of a four-unit multi-family structure at 1729 Francis Street in FrancisvilleNorth Philadelphia. When completed, the building will rise three stories tall and will feature a roof deck with a pilot house. In total, the building will hold 4,698 square feet of space, with construction costs estimated at $165,000, according to the permit.

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The Block at SoNo at 456 North 5th Street. Credit: ISA Architects

Exterior Work Progresses at The Block At SoNo in Northern Liberties

Construction work is making rapid progress on The Block at SoNo (also known as SoNo and SoNo Apartments), a 49-unit mixed-use development located at 456 North 5th Street in Northern Liberties. Designed by ISA Architects, the building stands four stories tall, with three commercial spaces on the ground floor, of which one will face North 5th Street, while the other two will open onto the parking lot at the building’s rear. The upper floors will hold residential units.

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Second scheme of the PSFS Building. Image via George Howe and William Edmond Lescaze

YIMBY Presents Massing Renderings of the Second Design for the PSFS Building

In recent weeks, Philadelphia YIMBY has shared a series of publications on the historic PSFS Building at 1200 Market Street in Market East, Center City. Yesterday we looked in detail at the first iteration of the building designed by architects George Howe and William Lescaze, who partnered in 1929. In this feature, we present massing renderings of the second design. The roof height of the current building stands 491 feet above the ground, which is likely as high as the iterations analyzed here would have also risen.

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4021 Haverford Avenue. Looking northwest. Credit: Google Maps

Permits Issued for Seven-Unit Building at 4021 Haverford Avenue in Haverford North, West Philadelphia

Permits have been issued for the construction of a four-story, seven-unit multi-family building at 4021 Haverford Avenue in Haverford North, West Philadelphia. The development will replace a three-story rowhouse located on the north side of the block between North 40th Street and North Preston Street. The new building will span a ground footprint of 2,413 square feet and will offer 10,134 square feet of interior space, which translates into generously-sized apartments measuring well over 1,000 square feet each. The structure will also feature a basement and full sprinkling. Permits list Mustafa Sencan as the owner and American Reliable Tasks Contracting as the contractor. Construction costs are specified at $1,257,000.

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