2008 World Series
The 2008 World Series was the championship series of Major League Baseball's 2008 season. The 104th edition of the World Series, it was a best-of-seven playoff between the National League champion Philadelphia Phillies and the American League champion Tampa Bay Rays; the 2008 World Series is notable because it is the only Fall Classic to involve a mid-game suspension and resumption. The Series began on Wednesday, October 22, concluded the following Wednesday, October 29; the AL's 4–3 win in the 2008 All-Star Game gave the Rays home field advantage for the series, meaning no more than three games would be played at the Phillies' stadium Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies won their second championship in their 126-year history to bring the city of Philadelphia its first championship in 25 years; this was the first postseason series lost by an MLB team based in the state of Florida. Additionally, both the Phillies' World Series wins have come against a team making their World Series debut; the Phillies advanced to the World Series after defeating the Milwaukee Brewers and the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL's Divisional Series and Championship Series, respectively.
The team won its position in the playoffs after its second consecutive NL East division title. This was the Phillies' first World Series appearance in fifteen years; the Tampa Bay Rays advanced to the World Series after defeating the Chicago White Sox and the Boston Red Sox in the AL's Division Series and [[2008 American League Philadelphia opened the season by posting a winning record in the opening month of April. The team went 14 -- 4 into the beginning of June; the team lost 9 of 11 games to end June, but came out of the All-Star break with a 9–6 record following the midseason hiatus. The Phillies posted the best road record in the National League, at 44–37. Philadelphia traded sweeps with the Los Angeles Dodgers in August and went 13–3 in their last 16 games, to win the National League East title for the second consecutive season, they defeated the Milwaukee Brewers in the Division Series, 3–1, the Dodgers in the Championship Series, 4–1, to book their place in the 2008 Fall Classic. This was the Phillies' first World Series appearance in fifteen years.
The Tampa Bay Rays began the season with a winning record in the opening month of April. The Rays became the first team since 1903 to have the league's best record on Memorial Day after finishing in last place the previous season; the team lost seven consecutive games leading up to the All-Star break. In August, the Rays lost seven games to finish out the month with an overall record of 84–51; the team concluded the season, albeit with a 13–14 record in September, by winning the American League East title for the first time in franchise history. As the Devil Rays, they had never finished with a winning record, nor finished higher than fourth in their division; the Rays beat the Chicago White Sox 3–1 in the American League Division Series. In the American League Championship Series, Tampa Bay defeated the Boston Red Sox in seven games, to advance to their first World Series in franchise history; the Rays became the third MLB team in the post-1969 "Divisional Era" to make the World Series in their first trip to the playoffs, joining the 1969 New York Mets and the 1997 Florida Marlins.
The Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Tampa Bay Rays four games to one, played in St. Petersburg and Philadelphia from Wednesday, October 22 to Wednesday, October 29, 2008. NL Philadelphia Phillies vs. AL Tampa Bay Rays The Philadelphia Phillies scored the first runs of the Series when Chase Utley hit a home run with Jayson Werth on base in the top of the first inning; the Phillies loaded the bases in the second inning, but were unable to score when Shane Victorino was thrown out at home plate by B. J. Upton; the Tampa Bay Rays loaded the bases in the bottom of the third inning. The Phillies extended their lead. In the bottom of the inning, a home run from Carl Crawford pulled the Rays within two runs; the Rays added their second run the following inning when a double by Akinori Iwamura scored Jason Bartlett. Tampa Bay starting pitcher Scott Kazmir was removed after six innings. Ryan Madson relieved Phillies' starter Cole Hamels in the eighth inning, pitching a single perfect inning. In the top of the ninth inning, two Phillies' runners reached base.
Tampa Bay's Trever Miller was brought on and threw four pitches—striking out Ryan Howard—before he was relieved. Philadelphia stranded two runners, on second and third base, entered the bottom of the ninth inning ahead by one run. Philadelphia's Brad Lidge struck out the first two batters he faced and retired the third batter to get the save. Tampa Bay scored the first runs of the game in the first inning when Akinori Iwamura and B. J. Upton scored on consecutive ground outs by Carlos Peña and Evan Longoria respectively; the following inning Upton singled, scoring Dioner Navarro. Rocco Baldelli attempted to score from second base, but was thrown out by right fielder Jayson Werth, keeping the Rays lead at 3–0. Cliff Floyd extended the Rays lead to four runs after leading off the bottom of the fourth inning w
Citizens Bank Park
Citizens Bank Park is a baseball stadium located in Philadelphia, within the city's South Philadelphia Sports Complex. It is the home of the city's Major League Baseball franchise, it opened April 3, 2004, hosted its first regular-season baseball game on April 12 of the same year, with the Phillies losing to the Cincinnati Reds, 4–1. The ballpark was built to replace the 33-year-old, now-demolished Veterans Stadium, features a natural grass-and-dirt playing field and a number of Philadelphia-style food stands that serve cheesesteak sandwiches, Tastykakes, soft pretzels and Yuengling beer, many other regional specialties; the ballpark lies on the northeast corner of the Sports Complex, which includes Lincoln Financial Field, the Wells Fargo Center, Xfinity Live!, the Center's adjacent theme park and food court. The stadium seats 42,792. In 1999, the Phillies and the Philadelphia Eagles of the National Football League joined their western Pennsylvania counterparts, the Pittsburgh Pirates and Pittsburgh Steelers, in making requests to replace both Veterans Stadium and Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh with separate baseball and football stadiums.
Pressure for new Philadelphia stadiums increased after a railing collapsed at The Vet during the 1998 Army–Navy Game, injuring eight cadets. The Pirates threatened to leave Pittsburgh in 1997, helping to convince the state legislature to approve funding for the four proposed stadiums. With their architectural plans in place, Allegheny County and the City of Pittsburgh approved the pacts swiftly, but debate in Philadelphia's city leadership continued as Pittsburgh opened its stadiums, in 2001; the Eagles agreed to the site of a former food warehouse southeast of Veterans Stadium. Lincoln Financial Field celebrated its grand opening in August 2003; the Phillies sought to build a downtown ballpark similar to Baltimore's, Denver's, Cincinnati's, Cleveland's, Detroit's and San Francisco's. Various locations were proposed, including Spring Garden streets; the team and the city announced that the site would be at 13th and Vine streets in Chinatown, just north of Interstate 676, within walking distance of Center City.
There was considerable support for a downtown ball park from business and labor and the city at large. But Chinatown residents protested; the City and team settled on building at the South Philadelphia Sports Complex on the site of another abandoned food warehouse. In the years that followed, residents and owner Bill Giles expressed regret that the new ball park was not located in Center City. Regardless of location, the team set attendance records in 2010 with all home games sold out for the first time in the team's long history, extending a sellout streak dating back to July of 2009 to 123. Chief architect of the new stadium was EwingCole's Stanley Cole. Unveiling of the new park's design and ground breaking ceremonies took place on June 28, 2001. Following the game that evening, the location of the left-field foul pole, 325 feet from home plate, was unveiled at the outset of the team's annual 4 July fireworks display. On June 17, 2003, Citizens Bank agreed to a 25-year, US $95 million deal for the park's naming rights and advertising on billboards, radio broadcasts, publications.
The ballpark was topped off on August 12, 2003, opened in April 2004. Shortly after the park opened in 2004, the bullpens were reassigned so the Phillies' pitchers used the lower pen and visitors use the upper pen; this was done to give Phillies' pitchers a better view of the game and to protect them from heckling by rowdy fans. However, the team forgot to rewire the bullpen phones. In its first years, Citizens Bank Park allowed 218 home runs in 2004 and 201 in 2005. More than half of those home runs were to left-field. Following the 2005 season, the left-field wall was moved back 5 feet. With these modifications, the park has a reputation as one of the most hitter-friendly parks in baseball. In 2009, it gave up 149 home runs, the most in the National League and second in the majors behind only the new Yankee Stadium, but has been neutral since, with a.997 park factor in 2011. Randy Wolf of the Phillies threw the first pitch at 1:32 pm EDT on April 12, 2004 to D'Angelo Jiménez of the Reds, who got the park's first hit, a lead-off double.
Bobby Abreu of the Phillies hit the first home run, which served as the franchise's first hit in the club's new home. Reds pitcher Paul Wilson earned the first win in that game and Danny Graves earned the park's first save. On June 14, 2004, Phillies first baseman Jim Thome hit his 400th career home run to the left-center field seats at Citizens Bank Park; the first inside-the-park home run was hit by Jimmy Rollins on June 20, 2004, against the Kansas City Royals. The Eastern League Reading Phillies hosted the Trenton Thunder on May 9, 2005 at CBP. On September 14, 2005, Andruw Jones of the Atlanta Braves hit his 300th career home run which went 430 feet off Phils reliever Geoff Geary in a 12–4 Phillies win; the ball landed in the upper deck in left field. The Phillies lost their 10,000th regular-season game in their history on July 15, 2007 to the St. Louis Cardinals, 10–2, marking the first time a professional sports franchise reached that plate
Comcast Center known as the Comcast Tower, is a skyscraper in Center City, Pennsylvania, United States. The 58-story, 297-meter tower is the second-tallest building in Philadelphia and the state of Pennsylvania, as well as the twenty-third tallest building in the United States. Called One Pennsylvania Plaza when the building was first announced in 2001, the Comcast Center went through two redesigns before construction began in 2005. Comcast Center was designed by Robert A. M. Stern Architects for Liberty Property Trust. At the beginning of 2005, the final redesign and its new name—the Comcast Center—was unveiled; the building is named after its lead tenant, cable company Comcast, which makes the skyscraper its corporate headquarters. Leasing 1,094,212 square feet, Comcast takes up 89 percent of the building; the building features retail and restaurant space and a connection to the nearby Suburban Station. In Comcast Center's lobby is the Comcast Experience, a 2,000-square-foot high-definition LED screen that has become a tourist attraction.
Designed to be environmentally friendly, the skyscraper is the tallest Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certified building in Philadelphia. In 1999, class-A office vacancy in the city was at 6.6%, leading developer Willard Rouse to envision a new tower. The developer settled on the location where he constructed this building, a 2-acre, $288 per square-foot parcel owned by Equitable Life Assurance Co. In 2000, architect Robert A. M. Stern began working on a design for a skyscraper being planned by Liberty Property Trust in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 2001, Liberty Property Trust announced its plan to build the 52-story One Pennsylvania Plaza in Center City. Anticipated US$400 million, One Pennsylvania Plaza was to be 750 ft and made of kasota stone similar to the Philadelphia Museum of Art; the site for the future skyscraper was at 17th Street and John F. Kennedy Boulevard, a site occupied by a building that housed the Defender Association of Philadelphia and a parking lot. Demolition of the building began in 2002 and ended in 2003.
Cable company Comcast had been looking for possible new headquarters space in anticipation of the end of its lease in Centre Square in 2006. Comcast was looking for more than 400,000 square feet of office space and developers were courting the company for their developments. Comcast was the only employer in the city with major expansion plans at the time. Comcast was considering staying in Centre Square, while contemplating moving their headquarters to the new Cira Centre building or One Pennsylvania Plaza. Comcast was spread out over 10 floors in two buildings at Centre Square and wanted space on contiguous floors. In January 2004, Liberty Property Trust unveiled a redesign for the building; the redesign turned One Pennsylvania Plaza into a 60-story, 962 feet tower, making it the tallest building in the city at the time. In the redesign, the kasota stone was changed to a lighter granite and a short pyramidal roof was added; the redesign was a result of discussions that had begun in 2003 with Comcast about moving into the tower.
On January 3, 2004, Liberty Property Trust signed a 15½-year lease with Comcast and a construction contract with L. F. Driscoll Co. Liberty Property Trust unveiled another redesign of the building and its new name, the Comcast Center; the now 975-foot, 58-story Comcast Center would no longer have a pyramid top and would have a complete glass facade. The architectural model was created by Richard Tenguerian. Liberty Property Trust hoped to get the One Pennsylvania Plaza site designated a Keystone Opportunity Improvement Zone. KOZ designation was intended to encourage development in poor, blighted areas by exempting the tenants of the building from all state and local taxes. Designating One Pennsylvania Plaza a KOZ was supported by Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, who said it was important to keep corporations within the city. At the time, many of Philadelphia's big employers' leases, including Comcast's, were due to expire, the employers were considering the possibility of moving out of the city and state.
Rendell said allowing Comcast to enlarge its headquarters by moving into One Pennsylvania Plaza could attract other corporate headquarters to the city. However, other Center City building owners, including Comcast's landlord at Centre Square, HRPT Properties Trust, were opposed to the plan, they said giving the tower the KOZ designation would give it an unfair advantage because Liberty Property Trust could charge above-market rents since the tax breaks would offset the cost for tenants. The group believed tenants attracted to One Pennsylvania Plaza because of the tax breaks would cause more vacancies in other Center City skyscrapers, rather than attracting more business to blighted areas as intended under the law. In early 2004, Center City had a vacancy rate of 12.8%. Both sides of the issue hired law firms and business associates to promote their positions to city and state officials. A report by the Center City District said if both One Pennsylvania Plaza and the Cira Centre, another skyscraper in the KOZ controversy, were filled by corporations moving from other Center City office towers, the city could lose US$153 million by 2018.
A report released by the group of building owners opposed to KOZ says the two buildings could cost the city US$91 million a year. In contrast, a report issued by a consulting company hired by Liberty Property Trust said that a KOZ designation for the skyscraper could generate US$27 million for the city. Critics of the KOZ designation claimed that close relationships between Liberty Property Trust and Comcast and the Rendell administration were inappropriately
The Stanley Cup is the championship trophy awarded annually to the National Hockey League playoff winner. It is the oldest existing trophy to be awarded to a professional sports franchise, the International Ice Hockey Federation considers it to be one of the "most important championships available to the sport"; the trophy was commissioned in 1892 as the Dominion Hockey Challenge Cup and is named after Lord Stanley of Preston, the Governor General of Canada who donated it as an award to Canada's top-ranking amateur ice hockey club. The entire Stanley family supported the sport, the sons and daughters all playing and promoting the game; the first Cup was awarded in 1893 to Montreal Hockey Club, winners from 1893 to 1914 were determined by challenge games and league play. Professional teams first became eligible to challenge for the Stanley Cup in 1906. In 1915, professional ice hockey organizations National Hockey Association and the Pacific Coast Hockey Association reached a gentlemen's agreement in which their respective champions would face each other annually for the Stanley Cup.
It was established as the de facto championship trophy of the NHL in 1926 and the de jure NHL championship prize in 1947. There are three Stanley Cups: the original bowl of the "Dominion Hockey Challenge Cup", the authenticated "Presentation Cup", the spelling-corrected "Permanent Cup" on display at the Hockey Hall of Fame; the NHL has maintained its associated trademarks. The NHL has registered trademarks associated with the name and likeness of the Stanley Cup, although there has been dispute as to whether the league has the right to own trademarks associated with a trophy that it does not own; the original bowl is 18.5 centimetres high and 29 centimetres wide. The current Stanley Cup is topped with a copy of the original bowl, made of a silver and nickel alloy, it weighs 15.5 kilograms. A new Stanley Cup is not made each year, unlike the trophies awarded by the other major professional sports leagues of North America; the winners kept it until a new champion was crowned, but winning teams get the Stanley Cup during the summer and a limited number of days during the season.
Every year since 1924, a select portion of the winning players, coaches and club staff names are engraved on its bands, unusual among trophies. However, there is not enough room to include all the players and non-players, so some names must be omitted. Between 1924 and 1940, a new band was added every year that the trophy was awarded, earning the nickname "Stovepipe Cup" due to the unnatural height of all the bands. In 1947, the cup size was reduced. In 1958, the modern one-piece Cup was designed with a five-band barrel which could contain 13 winning teams per band; the oldest band is removed when the bottom band is full and preserved in the Hockey Hall of Fame in order to prevent the Stanley Cup from growing, a new blank band added to the bottom. It has been referred to as The Cup, Lord Stanley's Cup, The Holy Grail, or facetiously as Lord Stanley's Mug; the Stanley Cup is surrounded by numerous legends and traditions, the oldest of, the winning team drinking champagne from it. Since the 1914–15 season, the Cup has been won a combined 101 times by 18 current NHL teams and 5 defunct teams.
It was not awarded in 1919 because of a Spanish flu epidemic or in 2005 because of the 2004–05 NHL lockout. It was held by nine different teams between 1893 and 1914; the Montreal Canadiens have won it a record 24 times and are the most recent Canadian-based team to win it, doing so in 1993. After the Lord Stanley of Preston was appointed by Queen Victoria as Governor General of Canada on June 11, 1888, he and his family became enthusiastic about ice hockey. Stanley was first exposed to the game at Montreal's 1889 Winter Carnival, where he saw the Montreal Victorias play the Montreal Hockey Club; the Montreal Gazette reported that he "expressed his great delight with the game of hockey and the expertise of the players". During that time, organized ice hockey in Canada was still in its infancy and only Montreal and Ottawa had anything resembling leagues. Stanley's entire family became active in ice hockey. Two of his sons and Algernon, formed a new team called the Ottawa Rideau Hall Rebels. Arthur played a key role in the formation of what became known as the Ontario Hockey Association, became the founder of ice hockey in Great Britain.
Arthur and Algernon persuaded their father to donate a trophy to be "an outward and visible sign of the hockey championship". Stanley sent the following message to the victory celebration held on March 18, 1892, at Ottawa's Russell House Hotel for the three-time champion Ottawa Hockey Club: I have for some time been thinking that it would be a good thing if there were a challenge cup which should be held from year to year by the champion hockey team in the Dominion. There does not appear to be any such outward sign of a championship at present, considering the general interest which matches now elicit, the importance of having the game played and under rules recognized, I am willing to give a cup which shall be held from year to year by the winning team. I am not quite certain that the present regulations governing the arrangement of matches give entire satisfaction, it would be worth consid
The Philadelphia 76ers are an American professional basketball team based in the Philadelphia metropolitan area. The 76ers compete in the National Basketball Association as a member of the league's Eastern Conference Atlantic Division and play at Wells Fargo Center. Founded in 1946 and known as the Syracuse Nationals, they are one of the oldest franchises in the NBA, one of only eight to survive the league's first decade; the 76ers have had a rich history, with many of the greatest players in NBA history having played for the organization, including Wilt Chamberlain, Hal Greer, Billy Cunningham, Julius Erving, Moses Malone, Charles Barkley, Allen Iverson. They have won three NBA championships, with their first coming as the Syracuse Nationals in 1955; the second title came in 1967, a team, led by Chamberlain. The third title came in 1983, won by a team led by Malone; the 76ers have only been back to the NBA Finals once since then: in 2001, where they were led by Iverson and lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in five games.
In 1946, Italian immigrant Daniel Biasone sent a $5,000 check to the National Basketball League offices in Chicago, the Syracuse Nationals became the Midwest-based league's easternmost team, based in the Upstate New York city of Syracuse. The Syracuse Nationals began play in the NBL in the same year professional basketball was gaining some legitimacy with the rival Basketball Association of America, based in large cities like New York and Philadelphia. While in the NBL with teams consisting of small Midwestern towns, the Nationals put together a 21–23 record, finishing in fourth place. In the playoffs, the Nationals would be beaten by the fellow upstate neighbor Rochester Royals in four games. In their second season, 1947–48, the Nationals would struggle, finishing in fifth place with a 24–36 record. Despite their struggles, the Nationals would make the playoffs, getting swept by the Anderson Duffey Packers in 3 straight games. Several teams began to leave the NBL for the BAA; the Nationals "recipe for success" began by recruiting Leo Ferris.
Staying in the NBL, Ferris signed Al Cervi to be player coach and outbid the New York Knicks for the services of Dolph Schayes who made his professional debut, leading the Nationals to a winning record for the first time with a record of 41–22. In the playoffs the Nationals would make quick work of the Hammond Calumet Buccaneers, winning the series in 2 straight games. However, in the semifinals the Nationals would fall to the Anderson Duffey Packers for the second straight season in four games. In 1949, the Nationals were one of seven NBL teams that were absorbed by the Basketball Association of America to form the NBA; the Nationals were an instant success in the NBA, winning the Eastern Division in the 1949–50 season, with a league best record of 51–13. In the playoffs the Nationals continued to play solid basketball, beating the Philadelphia Warriors in 2 straight. Moving on to the Eastern Finals, the Nationals battled the New York Knickerbockers, beating their big city rivals in a 3-game series.
In the NBA Finals, the Nationals faced. In Game 1 of the Finals the Nationals lost just their second home game of the season 68–66; the Nationals did not recover. Despite several teams leaving the NBA for the National Professional Basketball League before the 1950–51 season, the Nationals decided to stay put. In their second NBA season, 1950–51, the Nationals played mediocre basketball all season, finishing in fourth place with a record of 32–34. However, in the playoffs the Nationals played their best basketball of the season as they stunned the first place Warriors in two straight, taking Game 1 on the road in overtime 91–89. In the Eastern Finals the Nationals were beaten by the New York Knickerbockers in a hard-fought 5-game series, losing the finale by just 2 points. Cervi, playing less and coaching more, emphasized a patient offense and a scrappy defense, which led the league in the 1951–52 season by yielding a stingy 79.5 points per game as the Nationals won the Eastern Division with a solid 40–26 record.
In the playoffs the Nationals knocked off the Warriors again in a 3-game series. However, in the Eastern Finals the Nationals fell to the Knickerbockers again, dropping the series in four games; the Nationals would finish in second place in a hard-fought 3-way battle for first place in the Eastern Division for the 1952–53 season, with a record of 47–24. In the playoffs the Nationals would face the Boston Celtics dropping Game 1 at home 87–81. Needing a win in Boston to keep their hopes alive, the Nationals would take the Celtics deep into overtime before losing in quadruple OT 111–105, in what remains the longest playoff game in NBA history; the Nationals acquired Alex Groza, Ralph Beard as the Indianapolis Olympians folded leaving the NBA with just 9 teams for the 1953–54 season. Once again the Nationals would battle for the Division title falling two games short with a 42–30 record. In the playoffs the Nationals would win all four games of a round robin tournament involving the three playoff teams from the East.
In the Eastern Finals the Nationals would stay hot beating the Celtics in 2 straight games. However, in the NBA Finals the Nationals would lose to the Lakers in a hard-fought 7-game series where the 2 teams alternated wins throughout. With the NBA struggling financially and down to just 8 teams Nationals owner during the 1954–55 season, Biasone suggested the league limit the amount of time taken for a shot thus speeding up a game that ended with long periods of teams just holding the ball and playing keep away. Biasone and Nationals' general manager
Liberty Place is a skyscraper complex in Philadelphia, United States. The complex is composed of a 61-story, 945-foot skyscraper called One Liberty Place, a 58-story, 848-foot skyscraper called Two Liberty Place, a two-story shopping mall called the Shops at Liberty Place, the 14-story Westin Philadelphia Hotel. Prior to the construction of Liberty Place, there was a "gentlemen's agreement" not to build any structure in Center City higher than the statue of William Penn on top of Philadelphia City Hall; the tradition lasted until 1984 when developer Willard G. Rouse III of Rouse & Associates announced plans to build an office building complex that included two towers taller than City Hall. There was a great amount of opposition to the construction of the towers with critics believing breaking the height limit would lead to construction of many more tall skyscrapers, ruining the livability and charm of Center City. Despite the opposition, construction of One Liberty Place was approved and the first phase of the project began in 1985 and was completed in 1987.
When One Liberty Place was completed, it was the tallest skyscraper in Philadelphia. Phase 2 of the project included Two Liberty Place, a hotel, a shopping mall, a parking garage. Construction began 1988. Construction was completed in 1990, making Two Liberty Place the second-tallest building in the city; the two towers held their place as first- and second-tallest buildings in Philadelphia until the Comcast Center was topped off in 2007. Liberty Place was received enthusiastically by critics and led to the construction of other tall skyscrapers giving Philadelphia what architecture critic Paul Goldberger called "one of the most appealing skylines of any major American city". Liberty Place was designed by his firm Murphy/Jahn; the steel and blue glass skyscrapers were influenced by New York City's Chrysler Building. The major influence is the spire made of gabled angular setbacks. Two Liberty Place's spire is shorter and squatter, a design influenced by the needs of tenant Cigna. In the 2000s, Cigna reduced its presence in the tower, which led to the owners converting the upper floors into 122 luxury condominiums.
Below the two towers is the 289 room Westin hotel and the 143,000 square feet Shops at Liberty Place. The main feature of the mall is a round atrium topped by a large glass dome. In Philadelphia, there was a "gentlemen's agreement" not to build any structure in Center City higher than the statue of William Penn on top of Philadelphia City Hall; the tradition lasted until the 1980s when developer Willard G. Rouse III of Rouse & Associates announced plans to build an office building complex that included two towers taller than City Hall. Prior to any development plans, Rouse wanted to acquire prime real estate in Philadelphia and he eyed a block in Center City occupied by parking lots and several small buildings; the Oliver Tyrone Pulver Corp. eyed the land for development and the company and Rouse both vied for the block of land by buying small lots throughout the site. Neither developer was able to acquire enough contiguous space to build a large office building, so after a lawsuit and failed negotiations, the two developers agreed to an organized bidding war for each other's properties.
Under the rules agreed upon, the highest bidder would get the option to buy the other's property. Rouse won the auction in 1983 for an undisclosed amount. Rouse envisioned a $US150 million 38-story skyscraper, but on April 5, 1984 Rouse announced his plans to build a complex that would include two office towers, one 65 stories the other 55 stories, a hotel, retail space. Rumors and local lore speculate Rouse spent so much money buying the land that he had to build something that justified the expense. Opposition to the project had begun before the April 5 official announcement at a Planning Commission meeting; the meeting was attended by 300 people and a number of attendees were opposed or skeptical of the idea that the skyscrapers would be taller than City Hall. Critics feared breaking the "gentlemen's agreement" would lead to the development of more tall skyscrapers that would end up dwarfing City Hall and changing the makeup of the city. Critic of the plan and former Philadelphia city planner Edmund Bacon said, "Once smashed, it's gone."
A phone poll conducted by the Philadelphia Daily News had callers opposing breaking the height barrier by 3,809 to 1,822. Philadelphia Inquirer editorial feared; the location of City Hall was intended as the city's center from the city's founding, critics feared taller buildings would move the city's center away from City Hall. Critics of breaking the height ceiling favored the smaller scale of the cityscape and felt that a Philadelphia with skyscrapers would affect the livability of the city. Edmund Bacon and Center City civic leaders said that Philadelphia owes its livability and charm to its low profile. Chairman of the City Planning Commission, Graham S. Finney, noted that there was a general feeling that the sky above the city was considered a public space. Supporters of breaking the height limitation noted that the project would bring needed jobs and business to Center City and that shorter buildings were blocking views of City Hall from certain directions. A planning commission meeting was held on May 3 to decide if they would approve skyscrapers that break the height limit.
Executive director of the commissioners, Barbara J. Kaplan, said the project had "substantial merit" and "that there is an opportunity here we should not pass up." She cited that the project would create US$15 million in tax revenue. Opponent Lee Copeland
Sports in Philadelphia
Philadelphia, has been home to many teams and events in professional, semi-professional, amateur and high-school sports. Sports are a huge part of the culture of the Greater Philadelphia area. Philadelphia sports fans are considered to be some of the most knowledgeable fans in sports, are known for their extreme passion for all of their teams. Philadelphia fans Phillies and Eagles fans, are known for their reputation of being the "Meanest Fans in America". Philadelphia is one of twelve cities that hosts teams in the "Big Four" major sports leagues in North America, Philadelphia is one of just three cities in which one team from every league plays within city limits; these major sports teams are the Philadelphia Phillies of Major League Baseball, the Philadelphia Eagles of the National Football League, the Philadelphia 76ers of the National Basketball Association and the Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League. Each team has played in Philadelphia since at least the 1960s, each team has won at least two championships.
Since 2010, the Greater Philadelphia area has been the home of the Philadelphia Union of Major League Soccer, making the Philadelphia market one of nine cities that hosts a team in the five major sports leagues. Prior to the 1970s, Philadelphia was home to several other notable professional franchises, including the Philadelphia Athletics, the Frankford Yellow Jackets, the Philadelphia Warriors, the Philadelphia Quakers, the Philadelphia Field Club; the Greater Philadelphia area hosts several college sports teams. The Philadelphia Big 5 is an informal association of basketball schools consisting of La Salle University, the University of Pennsylvania, Saint Joseph's University, Temple University, Villanova University; those five schools, along with Drexel University, Delaware State University, the University of Delaware, all represent the Greater Philadelphia area in NCAA Division I, while several other area schools field teams in other divisions of the NCAA. Temple fields the lone Division I FBS football team in the region, though many Philadelphia fans root for other programs, such as the Pennsylvania State University Nittany Lions.
In addition to the major professional and college sports, numerous semi-pro, amateur and high school teams play in Philadelphia. The city hosts numerous sporting events, such as the Penn Relays and the Collegiate Rugby Championship, Philadelphia has been the most frequent host of the annual Army-Navy football game. Philadelphia has been the home of several renowned athletes and sports figures. Philly furthermore has played a significant role in the development of cricket and extreme wrestling in the United States. Philadelphia has a long history of professional sports teams. Philadelphia is one of six cities that has won at least one championship in the NHL, NFL, MLB, NBA. Philadelphia's combined total of sixteen championships in these leagues ranks sixth among North American cities; the Eagles, Flyers, 76ers all play their home games in the South Philadelphia Sports Complex section of the city. The Eagles play at Lincoln Financial Field, built in 2003; the Phillies play at Citizens Bank Park, which opened in 2004.
The Flyers and 76ers share the Wells Fargo Center, opened in 1996. All three venues are within walking distance of NRG Station on SEPTA's Broad Street Line; the Philadelphia Union of Major League Soccer plays its home games at Talen Energy Stadium in the satellite city of Chester, about 13 miles southwest of Philadelphia. Philadelphia has been home to relocated and defunct franchises; the Philadelphia Athletics of the MLB, the Philadelphia Warriors of the NBA, the Frankford Yellow Jackets of the NFL each played in Philadelphia for over a decade. Other former Philadelphia teams, such as the Philadelphia Quakers of the NHL, have been more short-lived. Both of the major league teams that relocated play in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 1980, Philadelphia became the only North American city in which all four major sports teams played for their respective championships in one year; the Flyers' run to the 2010 Stanley Cup Finals made the city of Philadelphia the first North American city to have all four of its major professional sports league teams play in the league championship finals at least once since 2000, although the Phillies and the Eagles are the only teams to have won a championship since 2000.
Philadelphia has had an odd trend of losing championship games during presidential inauguration years. In 2011, the Phillies became the first team in the city's major professional sports history to finish the regular season in first place in five consecutive seasons. Two other teams finished first during four consecutive seasons: the 1973–77 Flyers and the 2001–04 Eagles. Five other teams finished first for three seasons in a row: the 1929–31 Athletics, 1947–49 Eagles, 1965–68 Sixers, 1976–78 Phillies, 1984–87 Flyers; the city's sole existing Major League Baseball team is the Philadelphia Phillies. Founded in 1883, the team is the oldest continuous, one-name, one-city franchise in all of professional American sports; the Phillies compete in the National League East and have won the World Series twice, in 1980 and 2008. The Phillies have won seven National League eleven NL East division titles. In 2007, the Phillies lost a game for the 10,000th time in franchise history.