A rendering of the new campus, which is now completed. Via AgnesIrwin.org.
Last week parents and interested stakeholders got a look at the new campus of Agnes Irwin, a private girls’ school in Rosemont, which has undergone a significant expansion with the addition of swank new facilities. Given that it’s so close to Villanova, which is planning its own expansion, we’re thinking the prep school could offer the university some tips because it clearly knows how to get things done.
The Campus Improvements Project is the culmination of a 10-year AIS master plan that involved philanthropic giving on a massive scale. Here’s what’s new (’Nova has some of this, but not all):
- 55,000-square-foot Athletic Center
- Competition-sized basketball court that converts to two full-sized practice courts
- Squash Center with four squash courts and viewing area
- Rowing Center with rowing tank
- Four new tennis courts
- Resurfaced competitive playing fields, including a turf field
- Field hockey practice field
- New softball field
- New Student Life Center with expanded dining facility
- Innovation Center for Digital Media and Technology
- Green roof (and other sustainable building elements)
- Weight room and workout center
Rendering of original planned campus expansion on Lancaster Avenue via Villanova.edu.
It’s been a NIMBY nightmare for Villanova. Like Drexel, Temple and Penn, Villanova has been pursuing its own plans for a renaissance to increase the quality of campus and student life. But the former three schools contend with less residential opposition than does Villanova, whose initial go at an expansion plan was rejected by Radnor [...]
Yes, it’s true: The name of this property as listed (Woodstock II — The Barn) sounds like the second installment of a new documentary about the Woodstock Festival, only this one focusing on what the barn animals were doing when Jimi Hendrix played the Star Spangled Banner. For better or worse, it has nothing to do with the festival; in fact, its historical origins go back much further–to 1805.
The original Woodstock in Radnor Township was a fieldstone farmhouse erected in 1776 by the well-known Hunter family. According to the Bulletin of the Radnor Historical Society from 1958, Woodstock took its name from “the forest of white oaks, tulip poplars, black walnuts, black locusts, ash and black oaks, buttonwoods and maples, which adorned it, more profusely then but even now…”
Later, on the same land, three more properties would be built–one of which was Woodstock II — The Barn.
The Bulletin says:
You might think the most amazing feature of a house where the bathrooms outnumber the six bedrooms might be the spaciousness. But you’d be wrong because then you’d be ignoring the Eden-like gardens. Sure, this sprawling estate is named Le Cadeau (“the gift,” in French) and also features a beautiful pool and a hot tub as well as three fireplaces.
Yes, you’ll find room after room of handsomely appointed living space. And of course it was all designed by renowned architect Fred Bissinger. But the gardens are positively jaw-dropping at this Villanova mansion. As in, they recall Jane Austen and Downton Abbey and make you want to immediately take romantic strolls around your manicured grounds. Again: Eden-like.
This image plus this week’s $96,000 price cut means it’s one buyer’s lucky day. Make an offer!
Marketed as East Meets West, this Villanova property has both Chinese and Japanese design elements fused with Western materials and decor. It all starts with Genkan–Japanese for entryway–with a place to remove shoes before stepping up to the three expansive living spaces. The main attraction is a Great Room with vaulted wood ceiling–Western cathedral meets Japanese temple (it’s all “this meets that” here).
All other rooms follow the Japanese design: large and minimally decorated, with fresh wood and glass that seamlessly blends indoors and out. And it’s certainly worth highlighting that masterfully landscaped exterior with its pool and a calming Japanese garden complete with a winding walkway.
This home may be quite classically Nantucket-style, but it actually hails, in part (literally), from Michigan, where a 200-year-old barn was disassembled (“under an architect’s supervision”) so that this new home could be fashioned around it. Somehow the Nantucket exterior and this barn-frame interior work perfectly together, along with plenty of rustic touches that are totally unexpected in Villanova–even a privately sited Villanova.
The incredible property at 711 Mount Moro Road in Villanova was once called Selkirk and was home to Lydia Clothier–of the retail dynasty Strawbridge and Clothier–and her husband. The Clothier family had a number of exquisite estates in Lower Merion Township. This one became the Faith Bible Presbyterian Church in 1966 but is now, according to public record, owned by investment banker/oil exec John J. Hoey and his wife Tess.
The eight-bedroom, seven-bath home is just shy of 9,000 square feet. So much about it is exceptional, from the entryway–with its red tile floor, well-proportioned stairway and one of 13 fireplaces–to the Swedish sauna. There’s also a capacious pool, tennis courts and grounds–a “park-like setting,” the listing says–with gardens and plentiful trees. One of those trees, no doubt, felt the press of Lydia Clothier’s palm when she was still calling the place Selkirk.
SPOTLIGHT LISTING: Villanova Home for Sale Step up your summer entertaining at this Villanova stone manor with seven bedrooms and eight baths. This 1928 home has a grand hall with 18-foot ceilings, stone fireplaces and massive leaded cathedral window that would make the perfect backdrop for an evening soiree. There’s plenty of space for guests, [...]
Tom Knox announced in April that he was planning to run for mayor of Philadelphia in 2015. He’s run before for mayor and also ran for governor, so these are muscles he knows how to flex. And money is no object, so he can spend whatever he needs to on the campaign. In his 2007 mayoral run, according to the DN’s Chris Brennan, he spent in excess of $10 million–his own money, mind you, not donations. What’s another $10 million, give or take? Brennan writes:
Knox now says he will bank his money until late in the game and focus on fundraising early.
“At the very end, if needed, I’ll do whatever I need to do to win,” Knox said.
Translation: spend as much money as he has to.
Given the fact that money isn’t an issue, maybe it’s time for Knox to knock (ahem) off some dollars from the asking price of Meadowbrook, his spectacular estate that includes several buildings–including a main house, a stone carriage house, a guest house and a spring house. The three-car garage is also a separate building, and as it’s unfinished, could be another something-house if that’s preferable.