St. Joseph’s to lease arboretum, art gallery from Barnes Foundation

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The pact bars the university from adding new buildings on the property with its “living collection” of 2,500 groups of trees and flowers. (Photo courtesy of the Barnes Foundation.)

The Barnes Foundation has agreed to lease its arboretum and now-vacant art gallery located in Lower Merion Townshiop to St. Joseph’s University, which plans to add classroom facilities on the the site.

The price: $100 a year, plus maintenance and security services. The Catholic university has also pledged to spend at least $5 million on capital improvements to the site over the next 15 years, writes Joseph N. DeStefano on philly.com.

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The deal was reached in November and will run for 30 years, with the option to renew it after that in 20-year installments until 2207.

St. Joe’s plans to offer its students art and horticultural classes on the property, effectively adding the 12 acres south of Latchs Lane to its   neighboring 114-acre City Avenue campus, though Barnes will remain the owner.

To read the complete story click here.

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