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  #701  
Old Posted Nov 3, 2017, 7:56 PM
Boku Boku is offline
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Originally Posted by RonnieStevens View Post
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-am...KBN1D328P?il=0

Could we assume that other Canadian cities would be out of the HQ2 race?
I doubt any Canadian city is destined for HQ2, but this news has nothing to do with it anyway.
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  #702  
Old Posted Nov 4, 2017, 12:53 AM
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Toronto might. It's quite the cosmopolitan city, isn't it? Just look at the diagram for Toronto - hundreds and hundreds of new projects. Still, being outside the country is a major disadvantage. Aside from that, they could be a real contender. I doubt anyone took Vancouver seriously if they made a proposal.
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  #703  
Old Posted Nov 4, 2017, 1:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr Saturn64 View Post
Toronto might. It's quite the cosmopolitan city, isn't it? Just look at the diagram for Toronto - hundreds and hundreds of new projects. Still, being outside the country is a major disadvantage. Aside from that, they could be a real contender. I doubt anyone took Vancouver seriously if they made a proposal.


Umm , yes a few pages back . My list picked DC #1 , Toronto #2 , Queens / Staten Island #3 and every other
city in North America #4 .
I understand it might be a disadvantage because of being in Canada , but I believe it has at least as good a chance
as most other cities located in the US .
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  #704  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2017, 4:23 PM
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Brandywine makes two pitches for Amazon's HQ2 – for Philadelphia and Austin, Texas

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On the eve of Brandywine Realty Trust officially breaking ground on the first project of Schuylkill Yards, the real estate company has made two pitches to Amazon to locate its proposed HQ2 at its West Philadelphia project and in Austin, Texas.

Bradywine sent Amazon a 123-page supplement to the submissions that both the cities of Philadelphia and Austin made in their respective efforts to win the coveted second headquarters of the giant online retailer.

With the tagline “Two Cities. One Solution.” Brandywine struck a delicate balance not to pick a favorite between Philadelphia and Austin. However, there were some subtle hints of bias and in this case, that's okay because it seemed things tilted a tad more toward Philadelphia.

It consistently listed Philadelphia first even though one might put something like that in alphabetical order so not to look like there’s an element of prejudice. It also pitched Schuylkill Yards first, spending 29 pages to that development, and then 23 pages on a project is owns in Austin called Broadmoor that it is proposing Amazon consider for HQ2.

Brandywine is one of the largest owners of office properties in Austin and its Broadmoor campus is now mostly occupied by IBM Corp., and consists of about 1.1 million square feet in seven buildings. However, there’s 66 developable acres at Broadmoor that can accommodate 8.2 million square feet and upwards of 20 million square feet with additional entitlements. That would work for Amazon's HQ2.

Brandywine not only attempted to make a case for Philadelphia and Austin but for itself as well.

To that end, the company heavily focused on highlighting the work it has done in Philadelphia, which is where it is headquartered and owns the most trophy space in the city's Central Business District. To give credit where credit is due, Brandywine has done some ground breaking work in the city. The supplement it sent to Amazon showcases some of that including the company daring to venture into University City with Cira Centre, which was the first new office tower Philadelphia had seen in more than a decade.

“Brandwyine’s vision was to redefine the city’s skyline by building Cira Centre on top of the rail yards next to Amtrak’s 30th Street Station,” wrote Jerry Sweeney in a letter to Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, that was part of the package. “We were met with everything from profound skepticism to outright disdain. Some called it bold. Most called it foolish. But for a few, there was an undeniable sense of giddy optimism. Our big dreams inspired many to reimagine the future of Philadelphia, igniting excitement for all that was yet to come. But first, we had to get Cira Centre built.”

Brandwyine (NYSE:BDN) did get Cira Centre built and went on to develop in University City an apartment building called Evo, FMC Tower at Cira Centre South, a unique open space called Cira Green and rehabilitated a massive old post office building. All of which laid the ground work for its most ambitious project yet and that’s Schuylkill Yards, which is a $3.5 billion new neighborhood that will be constructed over two decades and create a community focused on innovation.

Drexel University named Brandywine master planner for the massive development that will span over 14 acres and, at build out, consist of five million square feet of office, lab, residential, hotel, retail and open space.

Tomorrow, there will be an official ground breaking for Drexel Square, a keystone of the project. That involves a 1.3-acre park at 30th and Market streets that will be built on what is now a surface parking lot and directly across from 30th Street Station. The former Bulletin building will be re-imagined with a new facade.

In the appendix of the supplement to Amazon, Brandywine made one last plug. If Amazon doesn’t pick Schuylkill Yards or Broadmoor, Brandywine, in select markets, “can offer individual parcels to accommodate a portion of Amazon’s program.” Those sites include: 405 Colorado in Austin; Knight’s Crossing in Camden, N.J.; and 25M Southeast and 1250 First St. in Washington D.C.

“Thank you for the opportunity to introduce Brandywine Realty Trust to Amazon and for your thoughtful consideration,” Sweeney wrote in the closing of his letter to Bezos. “We share your ambitions for a more connected, inspired world. And we’re ready to help you build it.”
https://www.bizjournals.com/philadel...s-hq2-for.html
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  #705  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2017, 4:46 PM
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Here's the Austin slant that also mentions Schuylkill Yards:

More details on potential Amazon HQ2 site in Austin: A blank slate with up to 20M square feet

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Since Amazon.com Inc. collected 238 proposals from U.S. cities to house a second corporate headquarters for the e-commerce giant, few details about those enticements have surfaced.

One site in play in Austin is the IBM Corp. campus in North Austin, a parcel branded as Broadmoor by owner Brandywine Realty Trust, as Austin Business Journal reported previously. Now new details have emerged on the scope and angle of that particular pitch thanks to an online copy of the 123-page proposal.

In Austin, Brandywine (NYSE: BDN) has been one of the largest landlords of office properties. In 2015 it bought Broadmoor from IBM, although the computing company remains a tenant at the site near Burnet Road and Braker Lane.

Brandywine has much more ambitious plans and obviously would love for Amazon to be a big part of that vision.

Brandywine is doubling down on Amazon with Door No. 1 and Door No. 2, and I’ve uncovered the details with a brochure entitled, “HQ 2 Amazon: The Brandywine Difference.” The subtitle hints at choice with, “A supplement to the submissions of the cities of Philadelphia and Austin. Two Cities. One Solution.”

Brandywine President and CEO Jerry Sweeney begins the brochure with, “Dear Mr. Bezos,” and continues to tell the story of how Brandywine began with one audacious development in downtown Philadelphia more than a decade ago.

...

Broadmoor is introduced on page 48 as a “66-acre campus uniquely positioned as a virtual perfect match for Amazon HQ2 — a transit-oriented, mixed-use project with an extraordinary existing amenity base of The Domain — Austin’s ‘2nd Downtown.’”

The Broadmoor redevelopment is currently entitled for 8.2 million square feet of constructed space, but potentially could achieve another 20 million square feet, the brochure states. A formidable advantage of the site is that it's largely a blank slate that could accommodate high density housing, retail, hotels and other supplemental amenities.

The brochure goes on to highlight Brandywine’s overall expertise, corporate values, development process, current tenant base, community engagement, financial wherewithal, track record of sustainable building standards and a list of current development projects.

The promotion ends on page 123 very simply: “Thank you for your consideration.”
https://www.bizjournals.com/austin/n...2-site-in.html

Summers, the Philly Biz Journal says they sent this supplement in with both the Philly and Austin bids. You mentioned on another web site that Brandywine was actually allowed to give a private presentation to Amazon. Does that still hold up?
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  #706  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2017, 4:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Boku View Post
Here's the Austin slant that also mentions Schuylkill Yards:

More details on potential Amazon HQ2 site in Austin: A blank slate with up to 20M square feet



https://www.bizjournals.com/austin/n...2-site-in.html

Summers, the Philly Biz Journal says they sent this supplement in with both the Philly and Austin bids. You mentioned on another web site that Brandywine was actually allowed to give a private presentation to Amazon. Does that still hold up?
They're not supposed to say, as they signed non-disclosure agreements, but yes, they (Brandywine) presented privately to Amazon.
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  #707  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2017, 9:05 PM
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Originally Posted by summersm343 View Post
They're not supposed to say, as they signed non-disclosure agreements, but yes, they (Brandywine) presented privately to Amazon.
Of course they did. Anyone who doesn't believe there are strings being pulled and decisions already made should read PT Barnum's biography.

There is PR and then there is the real world. Let's hope Brandywine has enough clout to push Amazon to SY. I really have a feeling they do, otherwise they wouldn't have hastily bought the building at 30th & Market for far more than it's worth.
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  #708  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2017, 11:37 PM
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This is interesting because Austin is often listed as a top contender, if not most likely, while Philly often gets left off of these "most likely" lists. Most people would probably think Austin is the better option, and that may very well land it there. Even though I may be biased, I really do think there isn't a better proposal in the nation than Schuylkill Yards.
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  #709  
Old Posted Nov 7, 2017, 11:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr Saturn64 View Post
This is interesting because Austin is often listed as a top contender, if not most likely, while Philly often gets left off of these "most likely" lists. Most people would probably think Austin is the better option, and that may very well land it there. Even though I may be biased, I really do think there isn't a better proposal in the nation than Schuylkill Yards.
I have to agree with you. No other site in the country offers this much connectivity to the central core of said city, to other major cities (NYC, DC, Baltimore, Boston, etc.), to two international airports (PHL and Newark), to endless colleges and universities, to parks, highway, trains, subway, buses...etc. etc. etc.

No other site checks off literally every single box Amazon is looking for like Schuylkill Yards does. Add in an endless supply of human capital/easy recruitment capability along the East Coast and Europe/Middle East, and easy access to a never ending talent pool via surrounding universities in Penn, Drexel, Temple, Villanova, UDel, Princeton, Rutgers, Johns Hopkins, Penn State, Carnegie Mellon, Pitt, etc. etc. - you can easily recruit from every single on of those, and them still be within a 2 hour train ride or flight to their home city.
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  #710  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 12:17 AM
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Originally Posted by summersm343 View Post
I have to agree with you. No other site in the country offers this much connectivity to the central core of said city, to other major cities (NYC, DC, Baltimore, Boston, etc.), to two international airports (PHL and Newark), to endless colleges and universities, to parks, highway, trains, subway, buses...etc. etc. etc.

No other site checks off literally every single box Amazon is looking for like Schuylkill Yards does. Add in an endless supply of human capital/easy recruitment capability along the East Coast and Europe/Middle East, and easy access to a never ending talent pool via surrounding universities in Penn, Drexel, Temple, Villanova, UDel, Princeton, Rutgers, Johns Hopkins, Penn State, Carnegie Mellon, Pitt, etc. etc. - you can easily recruit from every single on of those, and them still be within a 2 hour train ride or flight to their home city.
I think I've said this before, but my theory is that Amazon has had Schuylkill Yards in mind all along. As you said, it checks too many of the boxes not to have been. But rather than just call up Brandywine and say, hey we'd like to be your tenant, they wanted to throw it open to North America to see how they could get Brandywine and the city to make it worth their while. So I think it's ours to lose. There are other attractive offers out there, to be sure, but I fail to see how any of them could match up as well as SY.
Or Amazon could just call an audible and go a completely different way, we should be prepared for that also.
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  #711  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 12:57 AM
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Originally Posted by reparcsyks View Post
Of course they did. Anyone who doesn't believe there are strings being pulled and decisions already made should read PT Barnum's biography.

There is PR and then there is the real world. Let's hope Brandywine has enough clout to push Amazon to SY. I really have a feeling they do, otherwise they wouldn't have hastily bought the building at 30th & Market for far more than it's worth.
I was told by someone in the real estate biz and involved with an alternative, independent pitch to Amazon here that there was always only three cities in contention: Austin, Philadelphia and Chicago. I really hope they're right.
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  #712  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 2:47 AM
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I was told by someone in the real estate biz and involved with an alternative, independent pitch to Amazon here that there was always only three cities in contention: Austin, Philadelphia and Chicago. I really hope they're right.
That would be ideal, as we are probably the most likely out of those three. Others said Atlanta and Boston were going to get it, and having those two eliminated would be great. But then again, we don't know anything about this person, or how legit they are.
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  #713  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 2:56 AM
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Originally Posted by MyDadBuiltThat View Post
I was told by someone in the real estate biz and involved with an alternative, independent pitch to Amazon here that there was always only three cities in contention: Austin, Philadelphia and Chicago. I really hope they're right.
A lot of "insider" people have been saying a lot of different things. Time will ultimately tell.
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  #714  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 3:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr Saturn64 View Post
That would be ideal, as we are probably the most likely out of those three. Others said Atlanta and Boston were going to get it, and having those two eliminated would be great. But then again, we don't know anything about this person, or how legit they are.
Forgot to emphasize my major point in my post - shouldn't write posts late at night. This company discussed their proposal with Amazon even though they are not part of the city's bid. Which would indicate that the official folks got to talk directly to Amazon too.
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  #715  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 5:22 PM
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Looks like today was the official Schuylkill Yards groundbreaking ceremony: https://twitter.com/BrandywineREIT/s...01578167218177

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Thank you to all our partners who worked tirelessly toward this day! #SYGroundBreaking
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  #716  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 6:56 PM
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$3.5 billion Schuylkill Yards breaks ground on future park

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It’s really happening: Drexel University and Brandywine Realty Trust just broke ground on their ambitious $3.5 billion Schuylkill Yards project, about 18 months after they first announced their plans to transform 14 acres in University City into a leading innovation hub.

“At its core, Schuylkill Yards is centered around interaction, a place that encourages living, walking, collaboration, and fun,” said Brandywine Realty Trust’s CEO Jerry Sweeney. “What better way to embrace those ideas than by creating a park?”

The groundbreaking took place Wednesday morning at 3001 Market Street, which will be the site of the future 1.3-acre Drexel Square, an elliptical park designed by Shop Architects and West 8. The green space will replace what’s currently a parking lot across the street from 30th Street Station.

...

The first phase will include the buildout of the park, as well as 4.6 acres of residential, office, research, and retail development. Sweeney said that early next year, amid the park construction, the team will begin the revamp of the Bulletin Building and begin plans for the mixed-use towers.
https://philly.curbed.com/2017/11/8/...groundbreaking
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  #717  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 6:58 PM
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$3.5 billion Schuylkill Yards breaks ground on future park


New look at first tower - 3003 JFK:


New look at the new park - Drexel Square:




Quote:
It’s really happening: Drexel University and Brandywine Realty Trust just broke ground on their ambitious $3.5 billion Schuylkill Yards project, about 18 months after they first announced their plans to transform 14 acres in University City into a leading innovation hub.

“At its core, Schuylkill Yards is centered around interaction, a place that encourages living, walking, collaboration, and fun,” said Brandywine Realty Trust’s CEO Jerry Sweeney. “What better way to embrace those ideas than by creating a park?”

The groundbreaking took place Wednesday morning at 3001 Market Street, which will be the site of the future 1.3-acre Drexel Square, an elliptical park designed by Shop Architects and West 8. The green space will replace what’s currently a parking lot across the street from 30th Street Station.

Sweeney described the park as a both a “launching pad” and “centerpiece” for the innovation-driven neighborhood.

Drexel Square, Philly’s “the sixth square”

Along with a more than 12,000-square-foot elliptical green lawn, there will be custom-made granite benches, outdoor furniture, lighting, and raised planter beds filled with shrubs and perennials.

But perhaps the most striking feature will be the 30 soaring Dawn Redwood trees, which will be planted at more than 25 feet tall.

The park will open in fall 2018. In total, there are 6.5 acres of planned green space and street improvements throughout Schuylkill Yards.

What comes after the park?

Of course, the park just the start of Schuylkill Yards. The mega-development’s 15- to 20-year master plan calls for the buildout of new towers, totaling 6.9 million square feet in new construction. Currently, city approvals are in place for 1.3 million square feet of new development and the revamp of the Bulletin Building.

The first phase will include the buildout of the park, as well as 4.6 acres of residential, office, research, and retail development. Sweeney said that early next year, amid the park construction, the team will begin the revamp of the Bulletin Building and begin plans for the mixed-use towers.

The ceremonial construction start also happens to come just weeks after Philly submitted its proposal to bring Amazon’s second headquarters here. The city’s pitch included Schuylkill Yards as one of the three potential sites where the e-commerce giant could build its $5 billion headquarters.

“If we are lucky,” said Drexel University president Jonathan Frye, “Drexel Square may one day soon be a gathering spot for thousands and thousands of Amazon employees.”
https://philly.curbed.com/2017/11/8/...groundbreaking
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  #718  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 7:00 PM
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Brandywine, Drexel break ground on $3.5B Schuylkill Yards project

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It's been called one of Philadelphia's most critical real estate developments.

Today, with Mayor Jim Kenney and other politicians on site, Drexel University and Brandywine Realty Trust broke ground on the modest first phase of what's officially called Schuylkill Yards Innovation Community — a $3.5 billion, 14-acre mixed-use project the developers hope will lure Amazon's vaunted second headquarters.

"I have never seen our political leadership and business leadership work so well together," Kenney said, citing the groundwork done for the project by Brandywine, Drexel and city and state political leaders.

"Today, we take the first steps in making this large-scale innovation community a reality," said Jerry Sweeney, CEO of Brandywine Realty Trust. "We are proud that our first project is Schuylkill Yards will deliver a green public gathering space where the community can connect, interact and share experiences."

That first project is called Drexel Square, a 1.3-acre park on what is now a surface parking lot across the street from Philadelphia's 30th Street Station. Designed by SHoP Architects and West 8 Landscape Architects, the park is scheduled to be completed by the fourth quarter of 2018.

The overall project, which is expected to be developed in pieces over the next 15 to 20 years, is being developed by Brandywine on land owned by the developer and Drexel University.

Project plans call for:

-6.5 acres of green space and improved streetscape
-A total of 7 million square feet of developed space at build-out.
-A fully mixed-use project, including office, lab/research, residential, retail and hotel uses.

"Schuylkill Yards will be a national model for transportation-based development," said John Fry, president of Drexel University, at the groundbreaking ceremony. He extolled Drexel Square as "the long-awaited sixth square of our great city" — referencing other full-block parks such as Rittenhouse Square and Washington Square.

Della Clark, president of The Enterprise Center, a small-business incubator in West Philadelphia, announced during the ceremony that Brandywine has agreed to seed the new Grow Philadelphia Capital Initiative with an initial investment of $500,000. The ultimate goal for the new fund is to raise $15 million to help fund small businesses.

Kenney said the most important part of the Schuylkill Yards project is its impact on the surrounding West Philadelphia community. "What Philadelphia really needs is long-term, inclusive growth," he said.

But Pennsylvania Sen. Vincent Hughes, a Democrat who represents West Philadelphia, may have stolen the show with his direct remarks to Amazon.

"If Amazon is smart, they need to show up here," Hughes said. "Mr. Bezos, this is where you need to be."
https://www.bizjournals.com/philadel...chuylkill.html
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  #719  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 10:33 PM
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Forgot to emphasize my major point in my post - shouldn't write posts late at night. This company discussed their proposal with Amazon even though they are not part of the city's bid. Which would indicate that the official folks got to talk directly to Amazon too.
OK, but we still don't know how valid this unspecified person from this unspecified company is. It's hard to judge without those things known.
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$3.5 billion Schuylkill Yards breaks ground on future park


New look at first tower - 3003 JFK:
Wow is that ugly. How tall is it?
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Originally Posted by summersm343 View Post
Brandywine, Drexel break ground on $3.5B Schuylkill Yards project



https://www.bizjournals.com/philadel...chuylkill.html
Alright. Getting started. That should probably be another advantage for Amazon, if we have things ready for construction by the time they make the decision.
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  #720  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2017, 10:40 PM
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Wow is that ugly. How tall is it?
Taller than Cira Centre for sure. Looks to be 40 floors. That design seems to match this rendering we've seen recently:

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