Update: No Virgin Hotel, But Something Huge is Planned for Broad & Lombard

It was just this past March when we speculated that something big was coming our way from Goldenberg Group at 500 S. Broad St., as we shared renderings for a two-tower project which would be anchored by a Virgin Hotel. This came several years after an initial concept for the site was proposed, which included a glassy tower to the northern side of the lot. While we were thrilled to hear new details, we weren’t exactly sure if this was still conceptual or a little bit more. Now, thanks to a submission to the Historical Commission, we have additional clarity about plans for the property.

View of Health Center No. 1 from Broad & Lombard
Former World Communications Charter School on the corner at Broad & South
A previous concept, brought to us by SOM
A more recent two-tower proposal suggested a Virgin Hotel may be on the way
Aerial shows that only northeast portion of site will be developed now

While you may be sad to know that the concept has changed, this news is far from upsetting. We don’t see any signs of a hotel in the works, but what we do see is a 43-story, 542-foot tall tower coming our way from SITIO architecture + urbanism with the rehab to the Health Center handled by Voith & Mactavish Architects. This modern, curved high-rise will sit directly next to the historically protected building in the middle of the lot, with a small connector between the structures creating a pedestrian plaza. 468 units would fill the apartment building, and we assume there will be amenities aplenty here. But enough talking, let’s check out what’s proposed.

Rendering of new tower would sit directly next to Health Center on what is currently a parking lot
Another rendering shows how the base of new tower is recessed to give space to the existing building
View of the Lombard St. side of the tower
Rendering shows how much this building will tower over its neighbors
Another rendering shows scale of project as well as materials palate
East and west elevations show how it will soar over Symphony House
North and south elevations
A close-up shows how the new building will minimally intrude upon existing structure

We are a bit surprised to see nary a mention of commercial space; you may remember there were rumors in the past about the South Street Whole Foods grabbing space as part of this project. Might this mean we will see a Phase II on the south side of the lot soon? We can’t be sure, but it sure is exciting to see yet another huge residential project in the works at this long underused property. We look forward to one or maybe two significant phases here, changing the entire block for the better as South Broad Street’s development momentum continues to roll along.