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Develop the Nation’s Most Dynamic Transportation Hub-Based University District

Students in the University district

Drexel will become one of the nation's most engaged, vibrant, and modern multi-site urban universities, with strong and mutually sustaining relationships among our three Philadelphia campuses, surrounding neighborhoods, major transportation hubs, and the greater Philadelphia region. Drexel University will:

  • Implement a six-phase, 30-year Campus Master Plan to unify isolated buildings into an integrated, thoughtfully planned metropolitan campus, surrounded by compact green spaces and interlaced with residential, recreational, and commercial amenities that together help create a thriving community. Begin a sustained program to improve, maintain, and, when necessary, replace existing buildings to ensure high-quality facilities and comparability among our University City, Center City, and Queen Lane campuses.
  • Initiate the comprehensive redevelopment of the "superblock" bordered by 30th Street Station to the east, JFK Boulevard to the north, 32nd Street to the west, and Chestnut Street to the south, establishing a lively, mixed-use, multi-purpose district featuring academic, residential, retail, commercial, and technology-incubation uses, while setting new standards for design and environmental sustainability. This will also involve the cultivation of a strong relationship with Amtrak and SEPTA to potentially extend the mixed-use campus district into the adjacent railroad yards that border JFK Boulevard to the north. This could result in the long-term development of more than 50 acres of underutilized property in the Penn Coach Yards section of the Amtrak property, creating a mixed-use district extending to Spring Garden Street and tying University City to the Art Museum district and the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University located on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
  • Create an attractive and exciting front door to Drexel's University City Campus at 30th Street Station and use the redevelopment of the superblock to create the physical articulation of our mission, vision, and values. This Innovation Neighborhood will bring together education, research, and commercial entities such as pharmaceutical companies and technology-based organizations. International partners from China, Israel, Turkey, and other countries will be invited to have a presence in this new neighborhood. The development would house interdisciplinary programs, innovation partnerships, industrial joint ventures, and incubators in the context of an attractive, densely-developed, mixed-use neighborhood of academic buildings as well as retail, residential, entertainment, and hotel properties. Drexel University would be positioned as the convergence center for the innovation generation in Greater Philadelphia.
  • Fulfill our aspiration to become the nation's most civically engaged university by implementing all dimensions of our neighborhood initiatives plan. Our initiatives will provide much-needed retail and cultural amenities to the Drexel community as well as targeted development near all of our Philadelphia campuses. This plan promotes the creation of clean and safe neighborhoods; affordable and attractive housing with expanded opportunities for home ownership; job training and placement opportunities for community residents; resources to improve health and wellness in the community; and a high-quality innovative K-12 ecosystem featuring many educational options. These initiatives will lead to new and innovative urban solutions, from an "extension center"—modeled in part on Drexel's thriving 11th Street Family Health Services located in North Philadelphia—where Drexel knowledge and problem solving will be made available to community residents, to an urban farm that will tie food access and nutrition education to job training and sustainability. Whether through a community-based law clinic, architectural and engineering solutions for housing development, dance and theater programs for neighborhood children, hands-on workshops on energy-efficient home repairs, or digital training for local teens, Drexel's culture and practices will set new standards for university engagement.