Zoning approved for tallest Philly skyscraper - Philadelphia News

CENTER CITY - December 3, 2008 What do you think of the proposed tallest tower? Leave your comments below.

The American Commerce Center would shoot up from what is now a parking lot at 19th and Arch Streets.

At 1500 feet, it would rise high enough to tower over the neighboring 975 foot Comcast Center and all that surrounds it.

Today, City Council's Rules Committee voted unanimously to support legislation that would allow the highrise to go up despite an existing city ordinance limiting Center City buildings 125 feet.

Councilman Darrell Clarke says the proposed hotel, office, and retail space would create 1,000 permanent jobs and be good for the economy.

Some residents, who live nearby, support the idea of growth and change that helps the economy, but worry about the impact the Commerce Center would have on congestion and overall quality of life.

"Of course, if it wasn't that tall on that particular side where the people live that they can see out that window, I would have no problem with it; I think it would be good for the community," Ethel Barnett of Center City said.

"We are not against building on the block, but that block is too small for this particular building, which is so dense; the block is smaller than the Comcast Center and the building is larger than the Comcast Center," Narcia Halbert of Center City said.

The full City Council will vote on the legislation next week, it then goes to the planning commission, and then comes back to the full City Council for final approval. That final approval is likely to happen some time in January or February.

What do you think of the proposed tallest tower? Leave your comments below.

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