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Checking in on FMC Tower, Chop Tower, and One Riverside on the Schuylkill

So many changes on the Schuylkill

Both sides of the Schuylkill River have come a long way in the past two years, with the FMC Tower nearing completion on the west banks and One Riverside and Chop’s research tower going up on the other side.

A recent walk across the river revealed that the tip-top of the 49-story FMC Tower still needs its glass siding, but otherwise it’s almost near the finish line—at least, from the outside.

The FMC Tower broke ground in June 2014 and has touted itself as the city’s first vertical neighborhood. Developed by Brandywine Realty Trust, the same folks behind the EVO building and Cira Centre next door, and designed by Pelli Clark Pelli Architects, the tower will include office space, retail, and AKA residences on the top levels. AKA University City announced earlier this summer that it will open its extended-stay and luxury apartments this fall.

Across the river, Carl Dranoff’s skinny 18-story One Riverside condo building only topped off in late May, but already the glass siding has been mostly installed. It’ll be another year until construction is complete on the Cecil Baker-designed tower, though.

Down the road, construction on CHOP’s 23-story research tower has also been chugging along since breaking ground in 2014. In November 2015 we shared photos of the site just as the core was going up. Here’s what it looks like today.

The CHOP tower, which is phase 1 of a bigger CHOP expansion project, is expected to be complete in May 2017. Ballinger and Pelli Clark Pelli are the architects.