Saffron: West Philly Boom Is Nice, But Getting There May Be 100 Percent of the Battle

fmc tower

The Inquirer’s architecture critic, Inga Saffron, has occasionally been accused of being too negative — a charge leveled at most good critics at one time or another. In her latest Changing Skyline column, Saffron praises the West Philadelphia building boom in her own subdued way: “It’s nice to see the city’s skyline stretching west.”

You can hear the hesitation shimmer around that period, though, and indeed, Saffron does have a concern: that the Cira Centre South site, where the FMC Tower (rendering pictured) and the Evo building will be, is isolated from the Schuylkill waterfront “by a large, triangular moat, which looks down on the train tracks that feed into 30th Street Station and is one of several barriers that make walking there an unpleasant, and often hair-raising, experience.”

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Many More Details About the Skyscraping FMC Tower, Plus Morning Headlines

Here are some things we didn’t tell you yesterday but are nonetheless important regarding FMC’s new corporate headquarters, a skyscraper to be built as part of the Cira Centre South complex (here’s yesterday’s news, though not in a proverbial sense):

• The location will be the northeast corner of 30th and Walnut.
• The company will occupy the building by June 2016
• The architect of record on the building will be BLT Architects.
• The tower will cost $341 million.
• There will be a 2,000-space parking garage that will also be used by IRS workers at the former post office
• The 260 luxury apartment suites will be market-rate rentals that will include concierge services.
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Renderings of New FMC Tower That Will Rise in West Philly

fmc tower

Currently, FMC Corporation is at the BNY Mellon building in Center City at 18th and Market, so its new building as part of the Cira Centre South complex will be a change. It’s a locally founded and based company, one that’s been in the Delaware Valley for almost six decades, and its global HQ has been in Philadelphia proper since 2001.

Let’s have a look at the way FMC’s new tower will integrate with the Cira Centre South area. These renderings are all from a presentation posted on Brandywine Realty Trust’s website, hence the page numbers.

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