Free non-street parking at Temple will likely become a thing of the past when construction of a new academic building proposed at a June 17 Philadelphia City Planning Commission meeting begins.
The new building — which will be four- to seven-stories high and feature classrooms, an auditorium and science labs — will be built on the northeast corner of 11th Street and Montgomery Avenue, where the Dirt Lot currently lies.
The Dirt Lot, which received a short-lived makeover over last winter break [“Dirt Lot gets temporary repairs,” Kathryn. A. Lopez, Jan. 22, 2008], is vacant. Students often park their cars there because Temple does not consider it an official parking lot.
“We’re still in the early stages,” Vice President of Operations William Bergman said. “We’re looking at the conceptual idea [now]. We still need to talk to the provost and deans to find out what they’re thinking.”
Bergman said at this point, it will take at least 18 months to break ground for the new building, as Temple still needs to hire an architect. It will likely take about one year to design.
City planner Richard Redding presented the building proposition to the PCPC, which awarded conditional approval and recommended that Temple officials come up with a more urban plan that relates better to city streets and sidewalks.
Previously, the building design featured new open space in front of the building and a parking lot in the rear. The PCPC said these features prevent the building from being as dense and urban as possible.
According to a fact sheet compiled by the PCPC, the cost of the development would be roughly $74 million. In February 2007, the PCPC approved 66 acquisitions on the property by the university, giving Temple rights to build there.
A meeting for further negotiations between PCPC staff and Temple officials is set for July 7, 2008.
Morgan Zalot can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.