Drexel University has acquired a 3.6 acre lot on John F. Kennedy Boulevard that will become a gateway for its Main Campus in University City, Drexel’s President John A. Fry announced. The 156,234 square-foot property, purchased for $21.8 million, is currently used as a parking lot.
“This acquisition is a major investment in the University’s future,” said Fry. “The prime location of this site will significantly enhance Drexel’s capacity to be a powerful engine for regional economic growth. It provides various options not only for the development of the space for classrooms, research and other academic facilities, but also for sources of revenue for Drexel through potential residential and retail opportunities.”
A total of four parcels of land—known as 3001, 3003, 3025 and 3051 JFK Boulevard—were purchased from the L&R Group, the majority stakeholder. Plans for the development of the land are still preliminary. Potential uses of the site include: the growth and expansion of the University’s academic and student life facilities, the development of commercial spaces for retail and office use, and the opportunity to build a major research and technology transfer hub.
The acquisition supports Fry’s vision for Drexel to become one of academe’s most powerful engines for neighborhood improvement and regional economic growth. In his first address to the Drexel community, Fry outlined the principles that will govern Drexel’s neighborhood initiatives and community partnerships, and strategies for putting these principles into action.
Neighborhood initiatives include expanding security patrols around campus, sprucing up the city streets, providing financial incentives for employees to buy homes within key neighborhoods in West Philadelphia, adding more housing for students, partnering with neighborhood public schools and developing retail space on major streets to serve Drexel and its surrounding communities.
Founded in 1891 in Philadelphia, Drexel is the nation’s 14th largest private university and is ranked second among national universities in the U.S. News list of “Up-and-Comers.” Drexel is widely recognized for its focus on experiential learning through its co-operative education program and translational research initiatives.
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Niki Gianakaris, director, Media Relations, Office of University Communications
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