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Inspection of Comcast’s New Tech Tower Won’t Slow Completion Plans

Search for possible cracks in steel near top of tower ‘not a material issue,’ Liberty Property Trust official says 8/23/2017 12:03 PM Eastern
The new Comcast Technology Center will complement and rise above the Comcast Center. Image source: Comcast

An inspection for possible cracks in metal being used near the top of the new Comcast Technology Center in Philadelphia isn’t expected to affect the planned completion date of the structure.

Philly.com first reported that Liberty Property Trust, the new building’s developer, was conducting inspections of the steel being used for the upper-most portion of the building.

“This is not a material issue,” John Gattuso, Liberty Property Trust’s regional director, told Multichannel News, noting that the inspections and any potential repairs won’t delay the plan to complete the project by summer 2018.

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“This this will not have any impact on the occupancy,” he added, noting that the first two phases of the project have been delivered on-schedule, and that the anticipated timing for the three remaining phases is still on track.

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Gattuso confirmed that the inspection reported by Philly.com centers on the galvanized steel used for the “lantern” at the top of the structure.

Steel used there is reheated and covered with zinc, and the process can sometimes cause “indications” in the form of small cracks in the galvanizing or the steel. He said they are easily repaired without impacting the structural integrity of the steel.

The current inspection essentially X-rays each of the 5,200 welds at the top of the building, with about 35 showing evidence of any aforementioned indications.

“It’s from an overabundance of caution that we have gone back up,” he said. “As we’re finding [those indications], they’re being repaired.”

Costs for the inspection and any other associated costs will be borne by SteelFab Inc., the Charlotte, N.C.-based supplier of the steel, Philly.com said.

Comcast announced plans for the new structure in early 2014.

At 1,121 feet and 60 stories, the $1.5 billion Comcast Technology Center will complement and rise above the Comcast Center.

In addition to serving as a technology hub for Comcast, the building will also include a Four Seasons hotel (with 200-plus rooms) and provide the studio and office operations of NBC 10/WCAU and Telemundo 62/WWSI.

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