The largest municipal building in the country and the finest example of the Second Empire style
City Hall is the largest municipal building in the United States, containing over 14.5 acres of floor space. It is an architectural treasure inside and out. The public rooms are among the most lavish in the City. The City Council Chamber, the Mayor’s Reception Room, Conversation Hall and the Supreme Court Room are the most ornate.
The exterior is covered with sculpture representing the seasons and continents, as well as allegorical figures, heads and masks. All of the sculpture was designed by Alexander Milne Calder, including the 27-ton statue of William Penn atop the tower. The tower was the tallest building in Philadelphia until 1987. Its observation deck, which is open to the public, provides a panoramic view of the city.
In his original 1682 design for the city, William Penn set aside the Center Square for public buildings, but it took 200 years before the square was used for that purpose. The first City Hall was located at 2nd and Market streets, then moved to 5th and Chestnut streets when the Independence Hall complex was built.
The present City Hall on Center Square was begun in 1871 and took over 30 years to complete. John McArthur Jr. was the architect and supervised construction with the assistance of Thomas U. Walter. The first floor is built of solid granite — 22 feet thick in some places — supporting a brick structure faced with marble. The 548-foot tower is the tallest masonry structure in the world without a steel frame.
Monday – Friday, Guided tours available at 12:30 p.m.; Tower Observation Deck open Mon – Fri, 9:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. For tours and tower admission go to Room 121.
A bronze plaque inside the north portico contains William Penn’s Prayer for Philadelphia, written in 1683 as he was departing for England.
Tower Tours are reserved specifically for school groups from 9:30 a.m. until noon, Mon – Fri.
- PATH: http://www.uwishunu.com/tag/city-hall/feed/image/
Latest City Hall Stories from Uwishunu.com
June 19, 2013Tonight Picks: Center City Sips, P.M. @ Penn Museum Summer Nights First Concert Of The Season, Race Street Pier Promenade And More
June 6, 2013Roundup: Our Guide To The Awesome Lineup Of Recurring Outdoor Concert Series Set To Rock Philadelphia This Summer
June 5, 2013City Hall Presents Brings Free Concerts And Performances To The Courtyard Of City Hall All Summer Long, Including Tonight, June 5
March 20, 2013Tonight Picks: Celebrate The First Day Of Spring With Happy Hour, March Madness, Art In City Hall, Shakespeare For Free And More
March 19, 2013Art In City Hall And The Academy Of Natural Sciences Present Library Of Life Art Exhibit At City Hall
- Uwishunu covers everything fun and exciting happening in Philadelphia — read it daily for the latest on restaurants, bars, events, festivals, arts, music, hotels and more.
Broad Street and Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
In the neighborhood
1700 Benjamin Franklin Parkway Philadelphia, PA 19103
- Hotel Palomar Philadelphia
- Embassy Suites Philadelphia – Center City
- Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel
- Rittenhouse 1715, A Boutique Hotel
- Best Western Center City Hotel
- Four Seasons Philadelphia
- AKA Rittenhouse Square
- Le Méridien Philadelphia
- Latham Hotel
- View more hotels
Museums & Attractions
525 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
- Merriam Theater
- Masonic Temple
- Pig Iron Theatre Company
- Pennsylvania Hospital
- PSFS Building
- Lights of Liberty
- The Athenaeum of Philadelphia
- Center City District Sips
- Chemical Heritage Foundation
- View more attractions
Restaurants & Dining
1946 Lombard Street
Philadelphia, PA 19146
- Center City District Sips
- Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House
- R2L Restaurant and Lounge
- Café Lutecia
- Tavern 17
- The Comcast Experience HD Video Wall – Comcast Center
- Nodding Head Brewery and Restaurant
- Twenty Manning Grill
- View more Restuarants & Dining