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PCPC staff and partner City agencies created a series of existing conditions memos to kick off the University Southwest District Plan. Read our existing conditions memos.

University Southwest District at a Glance

The University Southwest District contains significant portion of the city’s Metropolitan Center. The University City section of the district contains the largest agglomeration of universities and hospitals in the region, and has become a natural extension of Center City Philadelphia. The entire district contains 68,382 jobs, which accounts for 10.9% of employment in the city.  “Eds and meds” account for 76.8% of these jobs. The Planning Commission estimates that the district will add at least 4,000 jobs by 2035.


Aside from its large employment center, the district is dominated primarily by residential uses.  Building types range from high-density apartment buildings around the college campuses, to the large Victorian homes of Spruce Hill, to the modest porch front rowhomes of Kingsessing.  Homeownership rates are below that of the City as a whole.  The district has a population of 81,145 as of 2010, and is expected to grow by an additional 3,200 residents by 2035.


In terms of transit infrastructure, University Southwest is arguably the best served district outside of the Central District. The focus of the transit network is 30th Street Station, which is served by the Amtrak Northeast Corridor Line and SEPTA’s Regional Rail Lines.  Residential sections of the district are provided connections to 30th Street Station and Center City via the Market Frankford El and the Green Line trolleys.



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