May 25, 2018

Is the Next Hot Neighborhood Accessible by Elevator?

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Is the Next Hot Neighborhood Accessible by Elevator?

Manhattan may get all the ink when it comes to high-rise habitation, but with the economy steadily improving and modern architectural and construction techniques encouraging more daring developments, cities from Los Angeles to Boston are finding that when you can't spread out, you may as well move up.

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Even the famously squat Washington, D.C., is edging into the trend, with talk of repealing the city's Height of Buildings Act that limits buildings to 130 feet (about 12 stories). A recent show of architectural concepts for Washington, "Tall DC: New Monumentalism," featured buildings designed not to create excessive shadows on landmarks.

And while building high-rises in earthquake-prone California might seem counterintuitive, the strength of modern skyscrapers in other susceptible areas, such as Japan, has San Francisco and Los Angeles alike considering pushing height restrictions higher. In San Francisco, the 1,070-foot Salesforce Tower should be finished in 2017, while the nearby First and Mission Towers will max out at 850 feet and a planned residental tower near the Embarcadero waterfront could reach 400 feet, 100 feet higher than current neighborhood restrictions allow. Similarly, Los Angeles' Wilshire Grand Tower will reach 1,099 feet.

Boston, in the meantime, will see the combination hotel and residential Four Seasons open soon at 699 feet, the Millennium Tower reach 625 feet, and the proposed Harbor Garage towers top out at 600 feet. Also on the East Coast, Philadelphia's Comcast Innovation and Technology Center should reach 1,121 feet, while Miami has a variety of projects in the pipeline, with the 822-foot Panorama Tower due to be completed in 2017.

Source: "The Skyscraper Boom That's Going to Make American Cities Way Taller," (Aug. 4, 2014)