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Checking in: Plans for the 19th and Chestnut Tower Next to Boyd Theatre

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The residential tower on 19th and Chestnut is now turned, tighter, and taller, explained architect Cecil Baker to the Center City Residents Association meeting last night. Baker and developer Pearl Properties were required by law to present their changes to the neighborhood association before the Civic Design Review meeting on November 24. After months of collaboration with concerned community stakeholders, the redesign contains several tweaks to the 250-unit high-rise.

1. The tower is now oriented north-south instead of east-west. This orientation will diminish the disruption of views from adjacent buildings, which include Kate's Place on 20th and Sansom Sts., and 1920 Chestnut St.

2. The tower also also been pulled away from these two buildings. As a result, the building has shrunk somewhat, but increased in height from 27 stories to 32.

3. Truck loading will be off 20th Street, eliminating potential for traffic congestion along Sansom Street, which will be reserved for 16,000-square-foot retail space. The loading area is designed to allow 32-foot trucks to be able to turn around inside the dock so to allow for a "no-beeping" zone—i.e. trucks won't have to back into or out of the street. Trash pick-up will also be shared between the tower, Kate's Place, and 1920 Chestnut.

4. Underground parking has doubled from 60 to 117 parking spaces.

Despite questions raised by community members, any talk of the Boyd Theatre was shut down at the meeting. A Pearl Properties representative only reaffirmed that the marquee will be preserved and that the "anticipation is that the lobby will be utilized as a restaurant." And as reported last June, the historic Alexander Building will house a two-story Target.

·New Boyd Plans include Tiny Target [Curbed Philly]
·Let's take one last look back at Philly's 'Art Deco Palace' [Curbed Philly]
·Developer revises Boyd Theatre redevelopment plan [Philly.com]