Penn Connects 2.0: Vision 2011-2030
July 17, 2012,
Volume 59, No. 01
Penn Connects: A Vision for the Future set out an exciting blueprint for the Penn campus. This 2006 plan was a direct response to the Penn Compact and the campus-wide opportunities presented by the acquisition of the former US Post Office Building at 30th and Market Streets, the Post Office Annex, and 14 acres of land along the Schuylkill River. It provided clear recommendations for incorporating these postal acquisitions into the campus, establishing a major physical presence for Penn along the Schuylkill River, and for creating new connections between the campus and Center City. Since 2006, Penn has completed nearly all of the projects set out as part of the Phase 1 implementation plan, resulting in a far-reaching, positive impact on the campus and community beyond.
The renewed vision of Penn Connects 2.0 builds upon the accomplishments of Phase 1 and the acquisition of a 23 acre former industrial parcel located at 3401 Grays Ferry Avenue, just south of campus along the Schuylkill River.
Penn Connects 2.0 enhances and reinforces the planning and design vision for the campus in response to emerging sustainability goals. The renewed vision is based on the following four principles:
- Focus the academic mission in the core campus, highlighting the integration of Penn’s outstanding 12 schools.
- Encourage connections within and beyond the campus to embrace interdisciplinary academic pursuit, research discovery and clinical care.
- Develop vibrant living and activity spaces that support the learning environment.
- Employ University sustainability goals and objectives to inform future development. In particular, balance new construction with adaptive reuse opportunities.
The above principles coalesce around five primary themes in Phase 2, a five-year horizon from 2011-2015:
- Teaching and Scholarship: Encourage integration of knowledge between 12 schools.
- Research and Clinical Care: Encourage integration of knowledge from “bench to bedside.”
- Living and Learning: Encourage integration of knowledge beyond the classroom.
- Campus and Community: Encourage integration of knowledge with local and global partners.
- Past and Future: Encourage integration of knowledge via reinvestment and new growth.
The composite view (below) illustrates the collective projects outlined in the previous themes. They include a number of new construction, renovation, streetscape and open space projects identified as part of the Making History campaign for each School and Center at Penn. The list summarizes the Phase 2 (2011-2015) and Phase 3 (2016-2030) projects (listed northwest to southeast).
The following examples are representative of the three categories of projects:
New Construction: Singh Center for Nanotechnology
The University officially broke ground on the Singh Center for Nanotechnology on February 17, 2011. The new nanotechnology research facility will encourage the collaboration, exchange, and integration of knowledge that characterizes the study of this emerging field, and will combine the resources of both the School of Arts & Sciences and the School of Engineering & Applied Science. Building completion is anticipated for the end of 2013.
Renovation: The ARCH
The ARCH (Arts, Research and Culture House) at 36th and Locust Walk has moved into the construction phase for renovations to serve as a center of campus life. Plans include a lounge, gallery, conference and group study rooms with state of the art technology, expanded office space, an outdoor terrace and indoor café, an auditorium for lectures, performances, or receptions, and restoration of historic architectural features.
Streetscape/Open Space: Shoemaker Green
Construction on Shoemaker Green, an 2.75 acre, $8 million open space project off 33rd Street between Franklin Field and the Palestra that will connect the central campus to the University’s new Penn Park on the eastern side, is nearing completion. Sustainable design aspects will highlight the project, including a rain garden, porous pavers, a cistern for rainwater reuse, and other green elements which support Penn’s Climate Action Plan. The green space was chosen as one of more than 150 pilot projects around the globe to test a new Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES) rating system for landscapes.
For more information see www.pennconnects.upenn.edu/
For a hi-res version of the map below, click here.