At Broad & Arch, Views From A Still Forgotten Tower

 

Liberty Title & Trust building | Photo: Hidden City Daily

Taken during demolition of Broad Street Station. Phialdelphia Historical Commission, 1953 | Photo: Lawrence Williams

Photo: James Dillon Collection, Athenaeum of Philadelphia

 

The 1929 Liberty Title & Trust Building at Broad and Arch Streets, the only existing building on the block to survive the expansion of the Pennsylvania Convention Center, remains empty a full year and a half after the enlarged facility opened.

The offices have been vacant since the Philadelphia Water Department moved out in the late 1990s. Until recently, a Dunkin Donuts occupied the street level corner, but it has closed.

The building, designed by the firm Savery & Scheetz, is owned by Realen Properties, who purchased it in 2008. Realen is the developer of the parking garage and retail project designed by Erdy McHenry Architecture being presently completed across Arch Street.

According to its website and previous media reports, Realen plans to convert the office building into a 150 room hotel. But multiple calls to the Berwyn-based real estate development firm seeking an update of the plans went unreturned.

The developer has recently tightened building security, after a spate of break-ins.


4 Comments


  1. Here are some photos of the vault and of the rooftop at night.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/phillyurbex/sets/72157631680613856/

  2. Thanks for that link! I took some shots of the vault but they all came out horrible….

  3. No problem! I’ve tried to do some research on this location myself. Everything i get keeps referring me back to the wachovia bank building. The building was owned by the Fidelity-Philadelphia Trust Co. Which if you consult Wikipedia will tell you the company was a result of a merger in 1928. However, everything I find refers to the wachovia building. I know the trust owned a couple of buildings in the area. I believe that this tower was originally one of two towers. One of which was destroyed by the convention center expansion. Is it possible thst this building was the trust building that wikipedia says is the wachovia building? Check out the company name on the documents from the vault. http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0092009/photos/phillyurbex/8070780293/

  4. I built a Lego model of the Liberty Title and Trust. I’ll have to take it out there sometime and photograph it with the real building in the background: https://www.flickr.com/photos/rgb/17300295929/in/album-72157650240500884/

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