The Zoning Board of Adjustment unanimously approved a zoning variance to build a hotel on top of a historic building on North 13th Street, just north of the Pennsylvania Convention Center, a couple weeks ago. The building was originally a film distribution center, built in 1947 for Warner
The brand would be a Marriott AC, a brand which is prevalent and popular in Europe. The planned 12 stories would be on top of the existing two-story building and would be set back 18 feet from 13th Street, which was required to receive approval from the City Historical Commission a few months ago. There would be 150 rooms and a small private eatery for the hotel guests, which would mostly serve breakfast. All parking will be by valet and will be underground, accessed by a car elevator off of Clarion Street. The developers hope to achieve LEED Gold certification and will include high efficiency appliances and fixtures, locally-sourced materials, and a green roof.
The developers requested a variance for the floor area ratio. The code allows an FAR of 7, but the developers requested an FAR of 8.75 to comply with the Historical Commission’s demands. The architects had to make the new tower taller and thinner and provide the 18 foot setback from 13th Street and a 13.6 foot setback from Florist. The taller tower meant that the developers had to build a stronger foundation, which added to the cost of the project.
By, Gabriel Gottlieb