Penn Connects is causing expansion further east — into the development of what will be the sixth tallest building in Philadelphia.
Penn will lease 100,000 square feet of the FMC Tower at the Cira Centre South, a 47-story building on 30th and Walnut streets that will open in 2016. This development is motivated by Penn’s master plan, the Penn Connects, which aims for campus growth over 30 years.
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While it is too early in the process to tell which offices will be located at the FMC tower, Penn Executive Vice President Craig Carnaroli said they would likely move administrative offices to the skyscraper to keep student friendly departments close to campus.
“The principle we had in the Penn Connects plan was to concentrate academics in the core of campus,” Carnaroli said.
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A prominent milestone in Penn Connects was the acquisition of United States Post Office lands. Of the 24 acres that Penn purchased, 14 were transformed into what today is Penn Park. Carnaroli added that the development eastward will help create a welcoming “gateway” to Penn’s campus.
“[It’s] important from a symbolic point of view and from anticipating our future needs,” he said.
FMC Tower isn’t the only place where Penn is increasing office space. Construction is set to begin next month on 3901 Walnut St., a six-story office building at 39th and Walnut streets. The building, set to open in March 2015, will house departments displaced by the construction of the Ronald O. Perelman Center for Political Science and Economics at the Philadelphia Trust Building on 36th and Walnut streets.
Staff working in Sansom Towers East and West will also be relocated to allow student uses for those spaces. Increased office space is further needed as FMC Tower will open a year later than 3901 Walnut.
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The Cira South complex, which is the former site of the US Postal Annex, is composed of three buildings — a garage, the FMC Tower and EVO, an apartment building on 30th and Chestnut streets currently under construction and designed for graduate students and young professionals.Comments powered by Disqus
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