List of tallest buildings in Philadelphia

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Philadelphia skyline from the west end of the South Street Bridge, 2018

Philadelphia, the largest city in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania, is home to more than 300 completed high-rise buildings up to 330 feet (100 m),[1] and 56 completed skyscrapers of 330 feet (100 m) or taller,[2] of which 32 are 400 feet (122 m) or taller and are listed below. As of 2019, the tallest building in the city is the 60-story Comcast Technology Center, which topped out at 1,121 feet (342 m) in Center City on November 27, 2017 and was completed in 2018.[3][4][5] Comcast Technology Center is the tallest building in the United States outside Manhattan and Chicago, and is currently ranked as the tenth-tallest building in the United States. The second-tallest building in Philadelphia is the 58-story Comcast Center at 974 feet (297 m),[6] while the third-tallest building is One Liberty Place, which rises 61 floors and 945 feet (288 m).[7] One Liberty Place stood as the tallest building in Pennsylvania for over 20 years until the completion of Comcast Center in 2008. Overall, seven of the ten tallest buildings in Pennsylvania are in Philadelphia, with the remainder being in Pittsburgh.[8] Philadelphia is one of only five American cities with two or more completed buildings over 900 feet (270 m) tall, the others being New York City, Chicago, Houston, and Los Angeles.[9]

Philadelphia's history of tall buildings is generally thought to have begun with the 1754 addition of the steeple to Christ Church, which was one of America's first high-rise structures.[10] Through most of the 20th century, a "gentlemen's agreement" prevented buildings from rising higher than the 548-ft (167-m) Philadelphia City Hall.[11] Despite this, Philadelphia amassed a large collection of high-rise buildings. The completion of One Liberty Place in 1987 broke the agreement,[11] and Philadelphia has since seen the construction of ten skyscrapers that eclipse City Hall in height.[2]

Philadelphia has twice held the tallest habitable building in North America, first with Christ Church, then with City Hall. The latter reigned as the world's tallest building from 1894 to 1908, and is currently the world's second-tallest masonry building, only 1.6 feet (0.49 m) shorter[12] than Mole Antonelliana in Turin.[13][14] Like other large American cities, Philadelphia went through a massive building boom in the 1970s and 1980s, resulting in the completion of 20 skyscrapers of 330 feet (100 m) or taller.[15]

As of 2019, three high-rise construction projects are active in Philadelphia: the W Hotel & Element by Westin at 1441 Chestnut Street in Center City, with completion expected later in 2019;[16] Arthaus and The Laurel, both residential buildings, with completion expected in 2021.[17][18]

Tallest buildings[edit]

This list ranks completed and topped out skyscrapers in Center City Philadelphia that stand at least 400 feet (120 m) tall, based on standard height measurement, including spires and architectural details but excluding antenna masts. An equal sign (=) following a rank indicates the same height between two or more buildings. The "Year" column indicates the year in which a building was completed. The only demolished building that would have ranked on this list was the 492-foot (150 m) One Meridian Plaza, razed in 1999.[19]

  Was Pennsylvania's tallest building upon completion
Rank Name Image Height
ft (m)
Floors Year Address Notes
1 Comcast Technology Center 1,121 (341) 60 2018 1800 Arch Street Construction broke ground July 2014; topped out on November 27, 2017;[4][5] currently the tallest building in Philadelphia, and the tallest building in the United States outside Manhattan and Chicago, the tenth-tallest building in the United States; opened to staff in July 2018 and the public in October 2018.[20][21][22]
2 Comcast Center 974 (297) 58 2008 1701 John F. Kennedy Blvd Second-tallest building in the state; 23rd-tallest building in the country; tallest building completed in Philadelphia in the 2000s[6][23][24]
3 One Liberty Place 945 (288) 61 1987 1650 Market Street Third-tallest building in the state; 28th-tallest building in the country; tallest building completed in Philadelphia in the 1980s[7][25][26]
4 Two Liberty Place Two liberty place.JPG 848 (258) 58 1990 1601 Chestnut Street 48th-tallest building in the country; tallest building completed in Philadelphia in the 1990s[27][28][29]
5 BNY Mellon Center 792 (241) 54 1990 1735 Market Street 63rd-tallest building in the country; also known as Nine Penn Center[30][31][32]
6 Three Logan Square 739 (225) 55 1991 1717 Arch Street 112th-tallest building in the country; formerly known as Bell Atlantic Tower and Verizon Tower[33][34][35][36]
7 FMC Tower at Cira Centre South 736 (224) 49 2016 2929 Walnut Street 121st-tallest building in the country; the tallest building in Philadelphia outside Center City[37]
8 G. Fred DiBona Jr. Building 625 (191) 45 1990 1901 Market Street Formerly known as the Blue Cross-Blue Shield Tower and the IBX Tower[38][39][40]
9 W Hotel & Element by Westin Philadelphia 582 (177) 51 2019 1441 Chestnut Street Topped out;[41] completion expected in 2019[42]
10= One Commerce Square 565 (172) 41 1987 2005 West Market Street [43][44]
10= Two Commerce Square 565 (172) 41 1992 2001 West Market Street [44][45]
12 Philadelphia City Hall 548 (167) 9 1901 1 Penn Square 1901 is the official year of completion and the transfer of ownership to the city government; however, the tower had been topped out in 1894[12] and the building had been partially occupied by then,[46][47] making it the tallest habitable building in the United States and the world from 1894 until the completion of the Singer Building in 1908.[48][49]
13 The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton 518 (158) 48 2009 1414 South Penn Square Tallest residential building in the city[50][51][52]
14 1818 Market Street 500 (152) 40 1974 1818 Market Street Tallest building completed in Philadelphia in the 1970s[53][54]
15 The St. James 498 (152) 45 2004 700 Walnut Street Tallest building located east of Broad Street[55][56]
16 Loews Philadelphia Hotel 492 (150) 36 1932 1200 Market Street Formerly known as the PSFS Building;[57] tallest hotel in the city, until the Four Seasons opens in the Comcast Technology Center; the building reaches a height of 750 feet (229 m) with its antenna, making it the 6th-tallest building in the city; total building area is 631,006 square feet (58,622.4 m2)[58][59][60][61]
17 PNC Bank Building 491 (150) 40 1983 1600 Market Street [62][63]
18= Centre Square II 490 (149) 40 1973 Market and 15th Streets [64][65]
18= Five Penn Center 490 (149) 36 1970 1601 Market Street [66][67]
20 Murano 475 (145) 43 2008 2101 Market Street [68][69][70]
21 One South Broad 472 (144) 28 1932 1 South Broad Street Formerly known as the Lincoln-Liberty Building and the PNB (Philadelphia National Bank) Building[71][72]
22= 2000 Market Street 435 (133) 29 1973 2000 Market Street [73][74]
22= Two Logan Square 435 (133) 35 1987 100 North 18th Street [75][76]
24 Cira Centre 434 (133) 28 2005 30th and Arch Streets [77][78]
25= 1700 Market 430 (131) 32 1968 1700 Market Street Tallest building completed in the 1960s[79][80]
25= Evo at Cira Centre South 430 (131) 33 2014 2930 Chestnut Street [81][82][83]
27 1835 Market Street 425 (130) 29 1986 1835 Market Street Name was changed from Eleven Penn Center in 2003[84][85]
28 Centre Square I 417 (127) 32 1973 Market and 15th Streets [86][87]
29 Jefferson Tower 412 (126) 32 1984 1101 Market Street Formerly known as One Reading Center and the Aramark Tower.[88][89]
30 Wells Fargo Building 405 (123) 29 1927 123 South Broad Street [90][91]
31 1706 Rittenhouse 401 (122) 33 2010 1706 Rittenhouse Square [92]
32 One Logan Square 400 (122) 31 1983 130 North 18th Street [93][94]

Tallest under construction[edit]

Name Height
ft (m)
Floors Year*
(est.)
Notes
W Hotel & Element by Westin Philadelphia 582 (177) 51 2019 Directly south of the Residences at the Ritz-Carlton. Surface digging on the lot began February 2015.[95][96]
Arthaus 528 (161) 47 2021 Luxury residential building at Broad and Spruce, Avenue of the Arts[97][17]
The Laurel 599 (182.6) 50 2021 Luxury residential building at 1911 Walnut St., Rittenhouse Square[18][98][99]

Tallest approved or proposed[edit]

This lists buildings that have been approved or are proposed for construction in Philadelphia and are planned to rise at least 400 feet (120 m). A floor count of 40 stories is used as the cutoff for buildings whose heights have not yet been released by their developers.

Name Height
ft (m)
Floors Year*
(est.)
Status Notes
2901 Arch Street - Transit Terminal Tower (30th Street Station District) 1,200 (365) 85 Proposed If approved and built will be the tallest in the city.
3101 Market - Schuylkill Yards 1,095 (333) 70 Proposed If approved and built will be the second tallest in the city. It will be the third tallest if Transit Terminal Tower is built.
3125 JFK Blvd - Schuylkill Yards 725 (221) 48 Proposed [citation needed]
3001 JFK Blvd - Cira II (30th Street Station District) 705 (214) 45 Proposed [100]
2928 Race Street (30th Street Station District) 670 (204) 45 Proposed [citation needed]
3100 Cherry Street (30th Street Station District) 605 (184) 40 Proposed [citation needed]
2929 Race Street (30th Street Station District) 590 (180) 40 Proposed [citation needed]
3000 Baring Street (30th Street Station District) 570 (174) 38 Proposed [citation needed]
1301 Market 547 (166.7) 38 2020 Proposed [100]
3001 Chestnut - Schuylkill Yards 515 (156) 42 Proposed [citation needed]
Cathedral Tower I 508 (154) 44 2020 Proposed [100]
2100 Market 500 (152.4) 39 2020 Proposed [100]
3151 JFK Blvd - Schuylkill Yards 435 (132) 36 Proposed [citation needed]
3100 Winter Street (30th Street Station District) 435 (132) 30 Proposed [citation needed]
Liberty on the River - Rental Building 2 428 (130) 34 Proposed [101][102]
Liberty on the River - Senior Living Building 428 (130) 34 Proposed [101][102]
3000 Market - Schuylkill Yards 425 (129) 30 Proposed [citation needed]
3120 Race Street (30th Street Station District) 405 (123) 27 Proposed [citation needed]

* Table entries with dashes (—) indicate that information regarding building heights or dates of completion has not yet been released.

Cancelled or distressed[edit]

Name Height
ft (m)
Floors Year Cancelled Reason Cancelled Notes
American Commerce Center 1,510 ft (460 m) 89 2009 2008 Recession Would have been the tallest building in the United States by official height. And second tallest by pinnacle height (including antennas) behind the Willis Tower.

Timeline of tallest buildings[edit]

An 1898 poster of skyscrapers in Philadelphia.

Philadelphia has seen few city record-holders compared to other cities with comparable skylines. Although churches, cathedrals, and the like are not technically considered to be skyscrapers, Christ Church, after being surmounted with its lofty spire in 1754, stood as its tallest building for 102 years before being surpassed by the (no longer extant) spire of Tenth Presbyterian Church, which was surpassed by City Hall in 1894. Then, due to the "gentlemen's agreement" not to build higher than the top of the statue of William Penn atop City Hall,[11] that building stood as the city's tallest structure for 93 years; it also held the world record for tallest habitable building from 1894 until the 1908 completion of the Singer Building in New York City.

Name Image Street address Years as tallest Height
ft (m)
Floors Architect Reference
Independence Hall 520 Chestnut Street 1748–1754 134 (41) 2 Edmund Woolley and Andrew Hamilton
Christ Church 20 North American Street 1754–1856 196 (60) Robert Smith [10][103]
Tenth Presbyterian Church 17th & Spruce Streets 1856–1894 250 (76) John McArthur, Jr. [104]
Philadelphia City Hall Broad & Market Streets 1894–1987 548 (167) 9 John McArthur, Jr. [12][48][105]
One Liberty Place 1650 Market Street 1987–2008 945 (288) 61 Helmut Jahn [7][106]
Comcast Center 1701 John F. Kennedy Boulevard 2008–2017 974 (297) 57 Robert A. M. Stern Architects [6][23]
Comcast Technology Center 1800 Arch Street 2017–present 1,121 (341) 60 Norman Foster [20]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

General
Specific
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External links[edit]