Drexel University unveils student housing development in Philadelphia campus

6 February 2012 (Last Updated February 6th, 2012 18:30)

Drexel University, in partnership with US-based developer American Campus Communities, has unveiled a $97m plan to create 361,200ft² of mixed-use student housing and retail space in Philadelphia, US.

Rendering of the transformation of Chestnut Street

Drexel University, in partnership with US-based developer American Campus Communities, has unveiled a $97m plan to create 361,200ft² of mixed-use student housing and retail space in Philadelphia, US.

Under the plan, the space on Chestnut Street between 32nd and 33rd Streets will be transformed into a new gateway for Drexel University and University City.

The development will include a 19-storey tower and two eight-storey townhouse-style buildings that will offer housing for 869 students and 11 storefronts.

Drexel University president John Fry said: "This innovative partnership combining dynamic urban retail with high-quality student housing, will serve as a catalyst in continuing the revitalisation of our campus and surrounding community."

"We look forward to partnering with American Campus Communities to create a more vibrant gateway to University City," Fry said.

The design of the mixed-use development has been provided by US architect Robert Arthur Morton Stern.

The two-storey street-level space of the 19-storey tower will feature retail outlets, restaurants and a new corner entry into the Barnes and Noble, providing students with an urban setting.

The upper floors of the building will feature student apartments with both shared and private accommodation options.

The development will create various types of accommodation, including two-bedroom/two-bathroom apartments, private accommodation in two unit options, four-bedroom/two-bathroom apartments and four-bedroom/two-and-a-half-bathroom townhomes with in-unit washers and dryers.

It is the first of three such projects the university is planning to develop over the next five years to double student housing capacity on the West Philadelphia campus.

A 14,800ft² community centre will also be developed with space for student amenities, including a social lounge with gaming area, fitness centre, meeting space, theatre and laundry facilities.

Under a 70-year ground lease structure with Drexel, American Campus Communities will develop, own and manage the property in the University City neighborhood via the campus’ American Campus Equity (ACE) programme.

The construction is expected to be completed by September 2013.

 

Image: The development will include a 19-storey tower and two eight-storey townhouse-style buildings. Photo: Business Wire.