Mormon Church Reveals Plans for Apartment Tower, Meeting House in Center City

With construction at a new temple in Center City Philadelphia advancing according to plans, Mormon Church officials recently revealed renderings of another development that will be located just one block from the future temple, on an existing surface parking lot immediately north of Vine Street and 16th Street.

1601 Vine Street – View from Logan Square

With construction at a new temple in Center City Philadelphia advancing according to plans, Mormon Church officials recently revealed renderings of another development that will be located just one block from the future temple, on an existing surface parking lot immediately north of Vine Street and 16th Street.

Jointly designed by Philadelphia-based BLT Architects and Robert A. M. Stern Architects of New York, the private development backed by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints consists of two distinct projects: a public meeting house for the church and a 32-story residential tower developed by Property Reserve Inc., the Mormon Church’s for-profit real estate investment arm.

As reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer, the two-story meeting house located at Vine and Franklin Town Boulevard will serve as a place of gathering, recreation and worship for around 1,000 of the 25,000 Mormons living in Philadelphia. The 24,000-square-foot meeting house will also host history and cultural centers for church and community members, as well as an outdoor courtyard.

The 490,000-square-foot apartment tower at 1601 Vine Street will have 250 market-rate rental units, 13 three-story townhouses and nearly 12,000 square feet of street level retail space meant to enhance the pedestrian character of 16th Street.

While church officials haven’t revealed any details regarding the total building costs, the Philadelphia Business Journal estimates that the project will need around $120 million in private financing. No groundbreaking date has been announced either, as project plans are yet to be approved by the City Planning Commission. However, the development is expected to create 1,500 to 1,800 construction jobs during construction.

Rendering courtesy of Robert A. M. Stern Architects