How a developer and Rittenhouse residents collaborated to make Philly’s newest skyscraper a home for more than just the rich
It was, at first, an ordinary Philadelphia development story.
When Southern Land Co. made its second foray into Philadelphia in 2015, the Nashville-based developer had a big idea: It would purchase the last developable swath in Rittenhouse Square, 1907-1915 Walnut St., and build a glass skyscraper there. To achieve its vision, the company said, it would demolish three historic buildings and replace them with ground-floor retail. On top, 425 apartment and condo units would occupy a 599-foot tower — making it the tallest residential-only building in Philadelphia’s skyline. Underground, plentiful parking could be accessed from a less-busy Sansom Street.
SOLOMON CORDWELL BUENZ Southern Land Co.’s initial 2015 proposal for the parcel, which featured long sheets of transparent glass. To achieve its vision, the company needed to demolish three historic buildings. Many residents were opposed.
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