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Lesley University purchases remaining Cambridge property from Episcopal Divinity School

Lesley University purchases remaining Cambridge property from Episcopal Divinity School

The Boston Real Estate Times reports that Lesley University now owns all of the Brattle campus previously part of Episcopal Divinity School, which is, as of May 2017, located in New York City in a collaborative partnership with Union Theological Seminary (see Cafe coverage here):

The purchase includes five buildings and the remaining half of a shared structure, including a number of Roxbury puddingstone buildings trimmed with limestone or red brick:

• St. John’s Memorial Chapel, an 1867-built chapel of about 10,000 square feet, at 91 Brattle St.

• Wright Hall, a former library built in 1911, at 99-1 Brattle St. This two-level structure is approximately 6,300 square feet.

• Burnham Hall, a three-story former dormitory and refectory of just under 10,000 square feet, at 99-2 Brattle St. It was built in 1879.

• Reed Hall, an 1873-vintage, 8,700-square-foot structure that originally housed a library and recitation rooms in its two floors at 99-3 Brattle St.

• 4 Berkeley St., a 9,800-square-foot, Victorian-style structure built around 1851. It is of frame clapboard construction over a fieldstone foundation and has a gabled roof, reaching 2½ stories in height.

• The remainder of Sherrill Library at 89 Brattle St., constructed in 1965, a striking, limestone-veneer, 52,000-square-foot building that houses the bulk of the university’s collection, as well as classrooms, lecture halls and offices. Since 2008, Lesley and EDS had jointly owned this three-story building with a lower level as part of the schools’ condominium agreement.

The purchase is part of a bigger picture:

A comprehensive campus plan will be developed to support the university’s 10-year strategic vision and will guide a phased approach to planning for the university’s entire Cambridge campus. These buildings, along with the two on Phillips Place and the campus grounds Lesley already owns, are in the Cambridge Historic District and feature eye-catching architecture and abundant green space.

“We are thrilled to have worked so collaboratively with our longtime partner, the Episcopal Divinity School, on the purchase of the remainder of the Brattle Campus,” university President Jeff A. Weiss said. “As we consider our current needs and plans for the future, I am excited about what this will enable us to do for our students, faculty, staff and alumni. Our plan is to make this campus a vibrant and integral part of Lesley’s community of teaching, learning, research and practice.”

The press release can be found on Lesley University’s website here.


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