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Philadelphia Waterfront Revival: Liberty Landing by Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates

by ArchNewsNow
October 30, 2002

It’s been at least 15 years since several major renewal development projects for Philadelphia’s Delaware River waterfront were announced. Some have come to fruition. Others still sit on back burners. Liberty Landing is coming back to life. Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates (BHKRA) is providing architecture, engineering, and site design for the major mixed-use development south of Penn’s Landing on Philadelphia’s Delaware River. The multi-phase project will transform an 18-acre portion of a dilapidated riverfront industrial area into an upscale residential community.


The parcel was rezoned for high-density mixed-use development. But now, according to BHKRA President and CEO Peter Moriarty, AIA, Liberty Landing will serve a singular purpose – residential – with supportive retail, not “destination retail.” He thinks that most residents will probably be from the suburbs rather than city dwellers. “I see two bubbles: empty-nester suburbanite baby boomers who don’t need as much space, and who want to be seven minutes from Center City – but still want the freedom that comes with a two-car garage, and ‘eco-boomers’ who want mass transit access to a 24-hour city.”


Phase One will include between 350 and 400 apartments in a 30-story tower and a 650-car integrated parking garage. Units will enjoy both expansive water and city skyline views. Future phases will extend in either direction, eventually forming a crescent that embraces the marina inlet. When completed, it will be largest urban multi-family residential development in the history of the city, with as many as 1,600 units, including 60 luxury townhouses. Other amenities include restaurants, a yacht club, a marina with 250 to 300 boat slips, and a fitness center.


The project is backed by Liberty Landing Associates, a Pennsylvania general partnership composed of Sheetmetal International Association Local Unit #19 and Mark Mendelson. According to a report in the Philadelphia Business Journal, the project represents the potential of $1 billion in development plans.


Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates employs approximately 350 people in Pittsburgh, Butler and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Boston; Washington, DC; and Cleveland, Ohio. The firm provides a wide range of services including architecture, landscape, engineering, interior design, and research, with particular expertise in sustainable design, technology integration, energy management, and historic preservation.

(click on pictures to enlarge)

(Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates)
Liberty Landing on Philadelphia's Delaware River waterfront

(Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates)
Liberty Landing by day; residents will have views of the city skyline and water.

(Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates)
Bird's-eye view

(Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates)
Study for waterside promenade

(Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates)
Rendering of waterside promenade

(Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates)
Site plan and section of the first residential tower

© 2002