The new building, officially called the Comcast Technology and Innovation Center, was designed by the renowned British architect Lord Norman Foster. The new building will be Philadelphia’s tallest skyscraper and the 8th tallest in America.
The tower will primarily contain office space for Comcast, NBC10, Telemundo 62, and other tech companies. Foster + Partners have designed the building with largely uninterrupted floor plates, drawing inspiration from the loft-like open workspaces favored by tech startups. The building's upper 13 floors will house a new, smaller incarnation of the Four Seasons Hotel. The lobby will feature a restaurant and there will be new concourse connections to SEPTA’s Suburban Station. Comcast currently occupies 90% of the Comcast Center (which officially opened in 2008) and leases other space in the city, so this project will allow the company to both grow and consolidate operations.
The $1.2 billion project cost includes a combined $40 million in state and city grants. Comcast-owned NBC10 and the Inquirer reported that these public investments will be used to pay for public infrastructure improvements like the SEPTA concourse extension.
Construction is anticipated to begin in fall 2014, and be completed in 2017.
Last fall Hidden City Daily’s Brad Maule, Mr. Philly Skyline, first reported the rumor that Foster + Partners would be the design firm behind a new Comcast building, if the project were to move forward.
Ashley Hahn is an independent writer with a background in historic preservation and city planning. She started Eyes on the Street for PlanPhilly in 2011 and was PlanPhilly's managing editor from 2015-2017. Ashley has lived in 12 zip codes that she can think of, including neighborhoods in Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, and New York. She is a Philadelphian by choice.