Buildings: Drexel Arena at the Armory – Updated August 31, 2011

Updated: August 31, 2011.  A very effective first step toward approving the appearance of the Armory would be to replace the “Jersey curbs” with a less obtrusive means of providing the security barrier required for military installations, since the Armory is home to an active unit of the Pennsylvania National Guard:

Replacing the concrete barriers with less massive bollards is part of the “less is more” campaign.

Original Post: April 6, 2011.  The Master Plan for Drexel University from 2012 to the Sesquicentennial in 2041, Drexel@150, will focus on existing buildings to further four goals: optimize the use of real estate resources, create a unique identity for the campus, connect Drexel to the communities around the campus, and achieve these goals sustainably.

The 2007 Master Plan enumerated eleven specific projects, one of which was titled “Drexel Arena at the Armory.”  Along with the Main Building, the recently-acquired Armory is an icon.  The Armory’s storied past includes hosting the longest continuously-serving military unit in the country, and is included among buildings featured in the National Register of Historic Places:

The Armory

A study was completed in 2009 determining the feasibility and cost of converting the structure to accommodate a 4,000 seat arena.  The $80 million pricetag led to an investigation of other options for building a less expensive arena.  The Armory is now used intensively for open recreation and student events.  The Armory is location number 6 on the following diagram:

The Armory is Location Number 6
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Buildings: North Academic Building from the 2007 Master Plan

The Master Plan for Drexel University from 2012 to the Sesquicentennial in 2041, Drexel@150, will focus on existing buildings to further four goals: optimize the use of real estate resources, create a unique identity for the campus, connect Drexel to the communities around the campus, and achieve these goals sustainably. 

The 2007 Master Plan featured eleven specific projects, of which one was titled “North Academic Building,” intended to house classrooms studios, and faculty offices.  The selected site was north of the Paul Peck Problem Solving & Research Building, formerly known as the Academic Building.  

In 2009, with the generous help of an anonymous donor, Drexel acquired buildings at 3501 Market and 3401 Filbert Streets:

3501 Market Street

Popularly known as the ISI Building (Institutie for Scientific Investigation), 3501 Market Street was designed by one of the late 20th century’s most prominent architects, Philadelphia’s Robert Venturi.  Once renovations are complete, the building will be known as the URBN Center and will house the Westphal College of Media Arts and Design, supplanting the need for the project as originally conceived in the 2007 Master Plan.  The architecture firm Meyer Scherer & Rockcastle designed renovations to the buildings at 3501 Market and 3401 Filbert Streets.

Original Site for North Academic Building is Number 3 in this Image

Buildings: New Student Housing from the 2007 Master Plan

The Master Plan for Drexel University from 2012 to the Sesquicentennial in 2041, Drexel@150, will focus on existing buildings to further four goals: optimize the use of real estate resources, create a unique identity for the campus, connect Drexel to the communities around the campus, and achieve these goals sustainably. 

The 2007 Master Plan featured eleven specific projects, of which one was titled “Natrona Student Housing,” intended to house 500 resident students, and planned as the last of a series of three residence halls constructed in consultation with the community.  While there was agreement on the siting of Race Street and Millennium Halls, and both projects were built, neither the Natrona title nor location was presented to or supported by the community.

Chestnut Square

Updated: May 5, 2014. coZara, a Japanese restaurant focused on small plates, opened its doors in Chestnut Square on Friday, April 25th.

For more information, check out this great blurb in Philadelphia Magazine: http://www.phillymag.com/foobooz/2014/04/23/cozara-officially-opens-friday/#more-2454371

cozara(Photo credit: Emily Mitnick)

Updated: February 6, 2013. Zavino will be joining Chestnut Square shortly. Take a look at the floor plan (with comments!) below:

Zavino

Updated: October 18, 2013. Take a look below at some different signage concepts for Yogorino, an Italian frozen yogurt shop that will be joining the retail lineup at Chestnut Square:

Screen Shot 2013-10-18 at 12.10.03 PM Screen Shot 2013-10-18 at 12.09.51 PM

Updated: September 11, 2013. We are pleased to announce that Vegetate will be joining the retail line up at Chestnut Square this fall. Vegetate will feature colorful, fresh and delicious items that capture the palates of vegetarians, vegans, and flexitarians alike.  The menu will offer grains, vegetables and beans available to eat in or to go for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks throughout the day.  Sample menu items include: hickory smoked Portobello mushrooms with roasted pepper, apple slaw and a spicy Vegenaise dressing on a 7-grain roll and three vegetable lasagna made with eggplant, carrots, leeks, tofu and homemade marinara sauce. Hours of operation will be Monday through Friday 7:30 am-8:00 pm and Saturday & Sunday 11:00 am-9:00 pm. 

Take a look at the logo below:

vegetate logo

Updated: July 30, 2013. Take a look at some interior perspective renderings that suggest what Yogorino’s interior might look like:

cutaway bar stools signage front counter

Updated: July 18, 2013. The construction on Chestnut Square is coming along beautifully. Take a look:

IMG_6987 IMG_6988

Updated: July 2, 2013. Take a look at the banner proof for Zavino, a pizzeria that will be opening in Chestnut Square this fall:

zavino

Updated: June 20, 2013. Take a look at the banner proofs for Joe Coffee and Shake Shack, future tenants in Chestnut Square!

joe coffee shake shack

Updated: May 20, 2013. Taken about a month after the photos from the previous Chestnut Square update, the aerial shots below offer a bird’s-eye view of the most recent progress on the mixed-use development. Take a look:

ACC_Chestnut_DSC_0910_6by10 ACC_Chestnut_DSC_0884_10by6 ACC_Chestnut_DSC_0864_6by10 ACC_Chestnut_DSC_0850_6by10

Updated: April 23, 2013. The Chestnut Square mixed-use development project is progressing beautifully as it approaches its expected Fall 2013 opening. Compare these exterior photos to the renderings in the April 9th update, as well as to the early construction photos in the Summer/Fall 2012 updates:

IMG_6474 IMG_6476 IMG_6483

Updated: April 9, 2013. Chestnut Square’s construction is moving towards its expected Fall 2013 opening. The entire residential portion of the building has been leased, and the 30,000 square feet of retail space will include a variety of restaurants such as coZama, Zavino and Shake Shack (scroll down for details). Even in its unfinished state, the 400,000 square-foot mixed-use development looks very similar to some of the initial project renderings. Take a look below:

2011-01-06 Chestnut Renderings[1]_Page_3_Image_0001 ACC Looking southeast

Zavino’s interior and exterior designs are coming together nicely. Below are several renderings that offer design possibilities for the restaurant’s future space:

zavino exterior 2 zavino exterior 1 zavino interior 5 zavino interior 4 zavino interior3 zavino interior2 zavino interior1
The design for Shake Shack’s interior and patio spaces is in the works. The two-story restaurant will offer both indoor and outdoor seating options, similar to the Center City location. Take a look at a couple of the designs under consideration:

shake shack seating shake shack plan

Chestnut Square will feature a plaza between the two townhouse buildings along Chestnut Street. Not only will the plaza add interest to the adjacent stretch of sidewalk, but it will provide yet another space in which social interactions can occur on Drexel’s campus.

courtyard plan chestnut square

Updated: March 12, 2013. A bird’s eye view of the townhouse buildings from the northeast shows that the facade is nearly finished:

DSC_0074

Shake Shack will be opening a second Philadelphia location at Chestnut Square on the ground-level of the 3200 Chestnut Street townhouse building. Below are two renderings of the site:

shakeshack2 shakeshack1

That’s not it! Zavino, the 13th and Sansom pizzeria, will also be opening a second location at Chestnut Square. A floorplan as well as two exterior renderings are featured below:

zavino floor plan zavino rendering

Updated: October 22, 2012.  The full extent to which the townhouse buildings along Chestnut improve the urban character of the space is easier to appreciate:

In November, an image will be available showing the west townhouse building with exterior cladding complete.

Updated: September 5, 2012.  The east townhouse building is at its full height of eight stories, making the urbanizing impact of the project on Chestnut Street increasingly apparent:

Updated: August 20, 2012.  Enough area of the exterior panel system has been installed to give a sense how the finished product will blend with the new architectural vocabulary on campus:

Updated: July 16, 2012.  It’s out of the ground.  Steel for the nineteen-story tower is being erected at 32nd & Chestnut:

Updated: December 27, 2011.  Preliminary work is in progress, preparing the MacAlister courtyard for safe access during construction along Chestnut Street, which begins in earnest after the new year:

Updated: October 2, 2011.  A very interesting marketing plan has been created for the American Campus Communities project, which has been approved to proceed by City Council and the Planning Department:

Details of the area surrounding 3200 Chestnut Street:

Other businesses in the surrounding area:

Retail spaces available:

Second floor retail space:

Construction is scheduled to begin at the beginning of January 2012.

Original Post: April 5, 2011.  The Master Plan for Drexel University from 2012 to the Sesquicentennial in 2041, Drexel@150, will be built around four goals: optimizing the use of real estate resources, creating a unique identity for the campus, connecting Drexel to the communities around the campus, and achieving these goals sustainably. Drexel will pursue these goals in the context of an enrollment plan contemplating future growth. The University owns a number of parcels of real estate with growth potential within the existing campus footprint.

One of the eleven projects enumerated in the 2007 Master Plan was infill of the undeveloped area in from of Creese and MacAlister Halls between 32nd & 33rd Streets.  In the existing condition, Creese and MacAlister Halls are set back fifty-three feet from the sidewalk along the south side of Chestnut Street. When built in 1962, these buildings faced a major traffic artery carrying automobile traffic toward Center City. This space is primed for mixed-use development, increasing the density of the neighborhood and adding much-needed retail amenities at street level with residential housing above.

Mixed-use development along Chestnut begins at 40th  and extends east to 34th Street, where, after a brief interruption, the Left Bank resumes the increase in residential density toward the Schuylkill River.  Development on this site will make a significant contribution toward developing a walkable residential neighborhood.  Proposed to developers as a ground lease for private participation, Drexel is currently considering expressions of interest from national firms specializing in collegiate housing.  Following is an example of a rendering submitted:

Mixed-Use Retail and Residential Housing Development
Drexel Athletic Field at 3200 Chestnut

Students of history will be interested to know that 3200 Chesnut Street was the site of Drexel’s first athletic field.

Buildings: LeBow College of Business

The Master Plan for Drexel University from 2012 to the Sesquicentennial in 2041, Drexel@150, will focus on existing buildings and development sites to further four goals: optimize the use of real estate resources, create a unique identity for the campus, connect Drexel to the communities around the campus, and achieve these goals sustainably. 

The 2007 Master Plan featured eleven specific projects, of which one, originally titled “Matheson Hall Relacement” and now termed the LeBow College of Business Building, is out for competitive bid.  Located on Market Street at the origin of historic Woodland Walk, the building replaces 60’s vintage Matheson Hall:

Matheson Hall

With its facade of orange brick, Matheson presents an image no longer consistent with Drexel’s stature as a nationally-ranked, comprehensive research university.  A study demonstrated that preserving the structure though renovation was not economically viable.  The new 177,500 square-foot structure is designed by a joint venture between Philadelphia architects Voith Mactavish Associates and New York’s Robert A. M. Stern Associates:

 
View of the LeBow College of Business Building from Market Street & JFK Boulevard

The office tower rises to the twelfth story above a five-story atrium surrounded by classrooms, event spaces, and student engagement space.  The building is scheduled to open in March 2014.

Matheson Hall in on the left in this image captured in 1968:

Buildings: Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building

The Master Plan for Drexel University from 2012 to the Sesquicentennial in 2041, Drexel@150, will focus on existing buildings to further four goals: optimize the use of real estate resources, create a unique identity for the campus, connect Drexel to the communities around the campus, and achieve these goals sustainably. 

The 2007 Master Plan featured eleven specific projects, of which one, the Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building, is approaching completion.  Located on the vitally-important northeast corner of Chustnut & 33rd Streets, the PISB is advancing toward completion in July 2011 and occupany for the fall academic term:

The Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building

The U.S. Green Building Council will silver-certify the PISB for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.  The principal sustainability feature will be a bio-filter wall, a forty-foot high vegetated surface taking the place of conventional filtration media in ventilation systems, removing airborne particulates and volatile organic compounds from the air stream:

The Bio-Filter Wall
President Constantine Papadakis

The building is named for Constantine Papadakis, Drexel’s visionary President and creator of the 2007 Master Plan.