Rebuffed Old City Project Slips Past Planning Commission

The zoning board now holds the power to make or break the project.

Rendering of 401 Race | Image via

Rendering of 401 Race | Image via

Looks like the would-be “great goddamn building” that Architectural Committee panelist Cecil Baker wanted from Priderock Capital Partners, the developer behind a proposed 216-unit residential complex at 401 Race in Old City, won’t be getting the design changes that would have made it “great” by the committee’s standards.

So, what happened? According to PlanPhilly’s Jared Brey, the Planning Commission voted in favor of recommending the developer’s current plan this past Tuesday. During the meeting, Commission chairman Alan Greenberger said he had no qualms with the height and loading variances Priderock is hoping to get.

Nevertheless, the zoning board, which meets August 26, will be the one to make or break the project. Brey reports that decision “will be based, theoretically, on whether the developers can make a case that the underlying zoning creates a hardship on their property.”

Previously, Baker scolded the developer on the proposed building’s design with, “You are on the most historic acre in the United States … This is not a place for broken-down architecture.”