William Penn is Watching
“Downtown” is often referred to as “Center City” by the residents of Philadelphia. In terms of population, Philly is the 6th largest city in the United States, preceded by New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, and Phoenix. (Thanks for the correction, Sekkle).
The skyline of the city had remained relatively unchanged for over two decades until the Comcast Center was completed in 2008. It is now the tallest building in Philadelphia. In fact, it was One Liberty Place that ended the city’s “Gentlemen’s Agreement”, which was basically a zoning regulation that no building in the city could surpass the height of William Penn’s statue at the summit of City Hall.
When One Liberty Place was erected in 1987, the locally known “Curse of Billy Penn” apparently plagued Philadelphia’s sports teams for almost 20 years. The curse maintained that if the Gentlemen’s Agreement was breached, the curse of William Penn, the founder of the city, would beleaguer the city’s major sports teams from winning any national competitions, which seemed to be the case up until 2008. (Read more about Billy Penn’s curse here.)