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United Lutheran Seminary


United Lutheran Seminary (ULS) formed in 2017 when the Lutheran Theological Seminaries of Philadelphia and Gettysburg merged. The combined ULS serves 400 students with operations on both campuses. The institutional merger and shift in enrollment from primarily full-time resident students to mostly part-time commuter or online seminarians prompted a reevaluation of the 11-acre Philadelphia campus, previously designated an historic district. ULS sought to better steward its under-utilized campus and be better neighbors to the Mount Airy community.

CBP Architects completed a feasibility study to provide needed community housing and open space for neighborhood use. CBP assessed existing historic and new academic buildings and explored concepts for sensitively and tastefully inserting much-needed multi-family residential construction into the site. The proposal consolidated ULS into its most traditional and purpose-built academic facilities. Historic houses facing the Germantown Avenue commercial corridor were designated for office and commercial services or to be renovated as residences. The study proposed converting a student dorm into 48 units of affordable senior housing, constructing three five-story buildings to provide 149 market-rate dwelling units, new underground parking, and reconfigured vehicular circulation to minimize impact on local traffic. Collaboration with a landscape designer yielded a sequence of wooded lawns and courtyards to bring cohesiveness and community access throughout campus.

  • Project Category

    Feasibility Studies

  • Client

    United Lutheran Seminary

  • Location

    Philadelphia, PA

  • Number of Units


  • Number of Stories


  • Gross Floor Area

    109,000 sf

  • Program

    Mixed-Use Residential, Institutional & Commercial