Spotted on Market Street: Philly Mag’s Home Base is Getting Cleaned Up

New owner Shorenstein is in the beginning stages of a facade clean up and restoration project at 1818 Market.

We have to admit, though it might not hold a candle to some of the city’s new glitzy office buildings, there’s a special place in our hearts for 1818 Market Street. After all, it’s been our home base for 24 years.

Designed in 1974 by what is today EwingCole, the 37-story building stands a clean 500-feet above Market Street and is the headquarters of Beneficial Bank (hence its other name, 1818 Beneficial Bank Place, though we’ve never heard anyone actually called that). With its concrete facade that looking weathered and worn, the 40-year-old high-rise is starting to show its age–especially in contrast to the revamped Sonesta at 1800 Market, which just saw the final (and colorful) touches put on its gigantic mural by artist MOMO as part of the Open Source Project by the Mural Arts Program.

Well, 1818 Market Street isn’t getting a mural, but it is getting a much-needed paint job. Shorenstein, a real estate investment firm based in San Fransisco, bought the building in April of this year for a reported $185 million, and plans to dish out $20 to $25 million in reviving the property in order attract tech/creative businesses seeking Class A office space. Scaffolding has been erected over the street level entraces of the building, and a representative from the company told us that the facade maintenance program will be conducted in four phases.

First, crews will be examining the fatigued concrete facade, going over it with a fine-toothed comb to find any imperfection for repairs. From there, the facade will continue to be patched and sealed and the windows will be re-caulked to make them water tight. Then, the spiffed-up concrete will be thoroughly cleaned to prep it for painting, the latter being the final step of the process. Work is expected to start in the coming days and the timeline will ultimately depend on if the weather cooperates during the painting phase.

Shorenstein is apparently still finalizing the color, but it will be some shade of white. So be on the look out for a glistening new 1818 Market Street in the coming months.

In case you were wondering, a sign hung on the building says that Marathon Grill will remain open during the project.

Fun fact: 1818 Market Street was the tallest building constructed in Philadelphia during the 1970s, according to its page on Emporis. Wikipedia takes it one step further, stating: “It was the tallest building erected in Philadelphia between the completion of City Hall in 1901 and the completion of One Liberty Place in 1987, during the period of the “gentlemen’s agreement”, the observation of an unofficial height restriction of the top of the hat of the statue of William Penn atop City Hall that stood for 86 years.”