Temple Magazine

Temple 20/20: The Future Comes in to Focus

Temple 20/20, the framework that will guide Temple’s growth over the next 10 years, will further distinguish Temple as a vibrant, international research university; a destination campus; and a leader in higher education.

Story by Maria Raha

Over the past 10 years, Temple University has seen many incredible changes: The numbers of students visiting campus and applying for enrollment have surged, making the university more competitive than ever before. The $380 million Access to Excellence fundraising campaign was a success, providing the resources for capital projects such as the Medical Education and Research Building and Alter Hall, as well as for scholarships, service initiatives and academic programming.

The arts at Temple have gained national and international attention, from the award-winning Temple Theaters and Temple Opera Theater to new opportunities created by the renovated Temple Performing Arts Center (formerly the Baptist Temple) and the Tyler School of Art relocation to Main Campus. Meanwhile, private investment in North Philadelphia, particularly around Broad Street, has brought new residential, dining and shopping options, including the new Fresh Grocer food store and the Pearl Theater at Avenue North.

This tremendous momentum, coupled with a strong strategic vision for the future, will power Temple’s growth and development over the coming decade.

Guiding the physical development of Main Campus is the Temple 20/20 framework, a plan that ensures that Temple’s flagship campus is an inviting destination for students, faculty, staff, alumni and visitors well into the 21st century.

Through Temple 20/20, Main Campus will be an increasingly enriching and enjoyable place to live, work, study and visit. Some changes, such as improved signage and pathways, will bring consistency and definition to campus. Others, such as green spaces, retail and resources for the public, will strengthen ties with the surrounding community. Temple’s relationship with its neighbors also will be fortified as the campus grows up, not out: Temple 20/20 will maximize the university’s current space.

Living and Learning

Temple 20/20 will further enhance life for students and neighbors. Perhaps most noticeably, Temple’s presence on Broad Street—through additional retail space, new and upgraded facilities, and more—will enrich living and learning in North Philadelphia. The new development on Broad Street will create a thriving, round-the-clock urban campus for the thousands of students who live there.

At the south end of Main Campus, a new residence complex will soon rise at the corner of Cecil B. Moore Avenue and Broad Street. The complex will add more than 1,500 beds, campus dining and street-level retail space. Along with the nearby Fresh Grocer, the residence complex will both add more amenities to the neighborhood surrounding Temple and help define the southern gateway to Main Campus.

Two blocks north, across from Temple’s main gates at Broad Street and Polett Walk (formerly Berks Street), a proposed 21st-century library will make research tools, technology, and cultural and educational events available to local residents and students alike. In front of the building, a public plaza will mark the library as a social, intellectual and community hub for Temple and its neighbors.

Immediately next to the new library site, renovation and expansion of Pearson and McGonigle halls is under way already. The athletics and recreation buildings will feature a new third floor, and will contain additional athletic courts, exercise space, classrooms, faculty and coaching staff offices; upgraded studios for the Department of Dance; new men’s and women’s basketball practice courts; and a new front atrium that will further increase retail opportunities at the street level.

Major physical changes, including new buildings and green space, have been proposed for Main Campus over the next decade. The Temple 20/20 framework will guide campus and university growth while maintaining Temple's current footprint.

As the vision of Temple 20/20 takes shape, the university community will simultaneously be able to make the most of Philadelphia's diverse cultural and artistic offerings and experience living, working and learning in a residential college environment. Photo courtesy Joseph V. Labolito

In addition to those renovations, Temple University Fitness—a new 20,000-square-foot center at Cecil B. Moore Avenue and Broad Street, across the street from the site of the residential complex—features new workout machines and strengthening equipment, offering students more ways to maintain healthful lifestyles.

These new and renovated facilities, as well as additional trees and greenery on Broad Street, will augment Temple’s presence along Philadelphia’s main thoroughfare, increase both convenience and campus amenities for students and local residents, and make Temple’s 24/7 urban campus even more vibrant.

Leading the Way

At the same time that Temple 20/20 is guiding the physical development of Main Campus, the university’s two-year-old Academic Strategic Compass provides direction for Temple’s academic growth. Its four main priorities for the future of Temple—Opportunities for Success, Metro-Engagement, Research Excellence and Global Commitment—all support the central ideal of Temple as a local, national and international destination.

Together, the Academic Strategic Compass and the Temple 20/20 Main Campus framework reinforce Temple’s mission of providing access to a world-class education. The university will increasingly be a place that both provides intellectual stimulation and serves as an international resource for expertise and innovative art and research. Focusing on these four priorities will bring to Temple the most eager,  best and brightest minds in every field of study from around the world.

In addition to the proposed new library on Broad Street, which will provide scholars with additional research tools, study space and library holdings, another new Main Campus facility will bolster the university’s efforts to foster intellectual curiosity and scientific knowledge.

A new science, education and research facility, which will contain laboratory and classroom space, will be built to fuel Temple’s ongoing mission to attract talented scholars to the university’s already outstanding research community and provide students with abundant opportunities for discovery.

Temple 20/20 intends to keep the whole university competitive. Increasing campus amenities such as athletics and recreation facilities, and new research tools and space means that Temple can continue to compete seriously for students at the top of their class, and faculty members who are leaders in their fields.

The framework also will give Temple a competitive edge in athletics. In addition to the Pearson-McGonigle renovation and Temple University Fitness, plans are being made to upgrade the Edberg-Olsen facility, Temple Football’s home base and practice space at 11th and Diamond streets. Based on fundraising support, a $9 million renovation is planned, to improve and expand its strength and conditioning areas, sports medicine facilities and academic support resources, in order to attract greater numbers of high-performing student-athletes.

Making Connections

As the vision of Temple 20/20 takes shape, the university community will simultaneously be able to make the most of Philadelphia’s diverse cultural and artistic offerings and experience living, working and learning in a residential college environment.A large green space, planned near Polett and Liacouras walks, will serve as Temple’s “great lawn” in the heart of Main Campus. The new open space will foster shared community experiences and create new spaces for events, social interaction and self-expression. Additional open space also will facilitate interconnected pathways that link formerly disconnected sections of campus, ease pedestrian traffic and provide cohesion between the campus’s open spaces and university buildings. New, clearer campus signage will aid in navigation.

Furthermore, walkways will anchor the east side of Main Campus and the Temple University SEPTA regional rail station at Berks Street between 9th and 10th streets.

This visible connection between the campus and SEPTA’s regional rail station provides another gateway between Center City and Philadelphia’s outlying areas. Increased emphasis on the university’s public transit options will draw city visitors and residents to campus to explore Temple.

Other changes to Main Campus will position Temple as a global destination for the arts. A new architecture building, for which ground was broken in the fall, will complete an arts quad that also includes the School of Communications and Theater, the Tyler School of Art and the Boyer College of Music and Dance.

Through these changes to Temple’s existing spaces on Broad Street and Main Campus, residents and visitors will view Temple as a place that stimulates their personal and academic growth. As Temple 20/20 comes in to focus, the university is poised to become a landmark for knowledge-hungry students, adventurous artists and intrepid scientists from around the world.

For more information about Temple 20/20, visit the Temple 20/20 website.

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