Comcast Officially Confirms Skyscraper By Norman Foster at 18th and Arch [UPDATED]

The Four Seasons will move there.

Rendering of Comcast Technology and Innovation Center via NBC10.

Rendering of Comcast Technology and Innovation Center via NBC10.

As Hidden City first reported in September, Comcast will indeed break ground for a Center City skyscraper designed by Norman Foster, as the company announced today, at 1800 Arch. Comcast CEO Brian Roberts, quoted by NBC10, said he envisions the building as “an urban vertical loft.”

Once construction is complete, the Comcast Technology and Innovation Center will be the tallest structure in Philadelphia, surpassing the company’s current headquarters by 150 feet, and among the top 10 tallest buildings in the country.

Watch the press conference:


More to come…

UPDATE 2:49pm: Okay, here’s more. Comcast is calling this a partnership with the Four Seasons, which will move into the top 13 floors of the building. It’s also, of course, a partnership with Liberty Property Trust.

Here are some specs:

• 1,121 feet tall, 59 stories
• 13 floors of hotel space with 200 rooms
• 2,682-square-feet of retail space
• An extension of the underground SEPTA concourse by one block
• Exterior glass elevator
• Shared workspace environment for 4,000 employees

UPDATE 3:05pm: And yet more:

This is expected to be the tallest building in the U.S. outside of NY and Chicago.

• $1.2 billion project cost — private investment plus grants from city and commonwealth
• 1.517 million square feet
• block-long lobby
• gardens
two restaurants
• fitness facilities
• public reception space
• Target completion date: 2017
• Ownership: 80 percent Comcast, 20 percent Liberty
• Management: Liberty
• LEED Platinum certification (hopefully)
• $30.7 million in annual commonwealth tax revenues
• 2,800 new permanent jobs within the city
• More than 20,000 temporary jobs
• $21.5 million in annual city tax revenues

Here’s some language from architect Lord Norman Foster to explain the vision:

“At ground level this ‘urban room’ embraces the city; it opens the building to the public and anchors it as a vital new neighborhood. It also links directly into the below ground public transport system. Above this, the highly flexible loft-like spaces and studios are designed for a dynamic way of working – an engine for the city’s evolution as the kind of leading technology hub presently associated with Silicon Valley. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with Comcast and Liberty Property Trust to further develop an outstanding location and a new landmark on the Philadelphia skyline.”

To see renderings: click here.