Construction Begins on Southern Land Company’s Newest Center City Philadelphia Mixed-Use Project

  • May 24, 2022
  • Jenna Lefever

Development at 1620 Sansom Street will offer luxury residential, restaurant, and health and wellness space

Southern Land Company (SLC), a national real estate developer of award-winning mixed-use developments and master-planned communities, today announced that construction has begun on its new mixed-use tower at 1620 Sansom Street in Center City Philadelphia. The project is SLC’s latest in Center City, preceded by the under-construction, 48-story luxury condominium and apartment tower, The Laurel Rittenhouse Square, at 1911 Walnut Street on Rittenhouse Square.

“We are proud to provide beautiful new residential offerings for those who want a luxury lifestyle and walkability in Philadelphia’s most vibrant and popular neighborhood, Rittenhouse Square,” said Brian Emmons, Vice President, Southern Land Company. “We recognized the potential of luxury residential projects in Center City years ago, and it’s exciting to see construction activity underway at 1620 Sansom Street. This project, like all SLC projects, is intended to provide an unparalleled living experience in an outstanding location. It is meant to make the lives of each resident better.”

The new mixed-use project will rise 27 stories and offer 254 luxury rental residences, including multiple penthouses with private terraces. Amenities will include a club lounge, a sky lounge with an outdoor rooftop pool, a fitness center with a yoga room, coworking space, and resident storage. Residents will also enjoy a variety of thoughtfully curated events and activities, custom designed by SLC’s in-house events and activities director.

Additionally, the project will feature 5,000 square feet of ground floor restaurant space and 17,000 square feet of space on the second floor ideal for another restaurant or best-in-class health and wellness facility. A unique feature of the building is its intentional five-foot set-back from the property line, which will widen the sidewalk along Sansom Street and allow for outdoor dining and pedestrian engagement.

Designed by renowned architecture and interior design firm Solomon Cordwell Buenz (SCB), the project at 1620 Sansom Street will incorporate the modern glass of the central business district with metal panel and brick at the base, providing a contemporary nod to the pre-war brick of Rittenhouse Square. The 320-foot tower will be chamfered to allow sunlight to reach Sansom Street and to orient views to downtown and the Schuylkill River. The interior design will focus on a warm, luxe experience, with light marble and golden accents throughout, and dark, patterned finishes for the club lounge.

“This project plays a vital role in the evolution of Center City by infusing a previously underutilized site with new life,” said Clara Wineberg, principal at Solomon Cordwell Buenz. “SCB values our continued partnership with Southern Land, and we are excited about our latest project together and how this thoughtful and much-needed new residential building will contribute positively to the dynamic neighborhood.”

Additional design and engineering consultants on the project include:

  • Hunter Roberts Construction Group (general contractor)
  • Stantec (civil engineer)
  • DeSimone Consulting Engineers (structural engineer)
  • Faulkner Design Group (interior design)
  • GeoStructures Inc. (geotechnical engineer)
  • Bala Consulting Engineers (mechanical and electrical engineer)

“We are extremely proud to continue our relationship with nearly every consultant and engineer that’s working with us on The Laurel to bring this new project at 1620 Sansom Street to Philadelphia,” said Emmons. “These consultants are some of the best design and engineering experts in the country.”

1620 Sansom Street was previously home to an aging parking garage. SLC acquired the property in December 2020.

SLC utilized Philadelphia’s Mixed-Income Housing Bonus program to incorporate an additional 75,000 square feet of residential space in the project, resulting in a $2,000,000 payment to the Philadelphia Housing Trust Fund.

The project at 1620 Sansom Street is expected to be complete in winter 2023. The Laurel Rittenhouse Square, just three blocks away, is expected to welcome residents in fall 2022.

SLC’s first project in Philadelphia was a 28-story apartment tower at 3601 Market Street, which was completed in summer 2015.

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