PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It was thumbs-up today in Philadelphia City Council for a proposed hotel-restaurant project in the Old City section of the city.

Council unanimously approved developer Robert Ambrosi’s plans for a combination hotel-condo-retail complex in Old City, at 4th and Race Streets, the site of the former Pincus Brothers Maxwell clothing factory.

“The project consists of a new hotel with the A-Loft brand, and a theme restaurant that would be branded by Toby Keith, and a future residential development portion along Fourth Street,” explains Ambrosi’s attorney, Ron Patterson.

The original proposal included a seven-story-high electronic billboard that would have been visible to drivers on the Ben Franklin Bridge.  But with nearby residents opposed to that, the zoning measure approved by Council does not allow for such a sign (see related story).

Patterson hopes for construction on the $70-million project to begin this year, with completion in 18 months.

Reported by Mike Dunn, KYW Newsradio 1060

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