$1.2 billion Comcast tower plan advances in Philly

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Bills paving the way for constructing the new Comcast tower have been approved by two Philadelphia City Council. But it was not completely smooth sailing for the proposal.

Councilman Wilson Goode Jr. questioned Angela Dowd Burton, the head of the city’s Office of Economic Opportunity, about minority contractor participation in the $1.2 billion Comcast Technology Center project. The developers are striving to send 25 percent of the work to racial minorities and 2 percent to women and the disabled.

“There should be real goals for these projects,” Goode said. “I’m not here to say whether the number is high or low. I’m here to say the goals are not real.”

Bill Golderer, pastor of the neighboring Arch Street Presbyterian Church, said he worries about plans to raise the street up by three feet.

“The members of our congregation and other stakeholders in our community are interested in knowing how this will impact the existing sidewalk and the landscaping and fencing and building entrances, which are now on the western boarder of our property,” Golderer said.

The 59-story innovation and technology center is planned for 1800 Arch St., and Comcast will keep its existing skyscraper as well.

Bill Hankowsky of Liberty Property Trust, which will co-own the building with Comcast, has said it will be the tallest building in Philadelphia.

The bills will now go to the full council for approval.

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