The University Southwest District Plan was adopted by PCPC on June 11, 2013.
ABOUT THE DISTRICT
The University Southwest District is home to some of the largest institutions of health and education in Philadelphia: the University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia, and the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. Throughout the district there is a strong historic housing fabric as seen in Powelton Village, Spruce Hill, Garden Court, and Cedar Park. Planning challenges include balancing institutional growth with residents' needs and guiding growth toward appropriate locations.
University City is a growing center of development and density. Commercial office rents have surpassed those in Center City, and its Amtrak Station is the third busiest in the nation. The 30th Street Station District Plan features an improved 30th Street Station with connections and amenities for transit users and pedestrians. Drexel University and Brandywine Realty Trust have partnered to develop around the station with Schuylkill Yards, a five-million-square-foot development project with entrepreneurial, teaching, and research facilities, offices, residential, retail, and a large public open space. Both plans were developed in tandem to capitalize on transit access and make the area function as a premier destination that further supports the Station.
Completing the Trail Network
University Southwest includes portions of the East Coast Greenway that are currently incomplete. This year, the Bartram’s Mile Trail eliminated a gap in the Greenway, extending the Schuylkill River Trail into Southwest Philadelphia. The Schuylkill River Development Corporation is pursuing a connection between Bartram's Garden via The Schuylkill River Swing Bridge. The bridge is currently in design, with an anticipated construction date of 2018.
Image: Schuylkill River Development Corporation
District Plans include a wide range of recommendations. Some can be acted upon quickly, while others require additional resources or policy changes, or further planning.