College Hall

Temple University | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Designed by Thomas Lonsdale in 1892 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, College Hall was Temple University’s second campus building and once served as the university’s main classroom facility. After a major fire and standing vacant for nearly twenty years, Temple chose to restore and rehabilitate the building to become the new home for the James E. Beasley School of Law.

The scope of VMA’s work included exterior restoration and the creation of a new, accessible entrance, all of which needed to comply with preservation-related guidelines established by the Secretary of the Interior and the Philadelphia Historic Commission.

VMA designed the sensitive new entry addition by transforming what was the original back of the building into a main entrance that opens up onto a prominent campus square and connected to a new elevator inserted into the original building. Improvements also included new gutters and flashing, the restoration of all masonry, and reglazing the historic wood windows to improve energy efficiency. After analysis unexpectedly revealed that the existing pine roof trusses had deteriorated, a new steel structure was installed in its place with slate roofing to replicate the building’s original appearance.


Preservation Pennsylvania Historic Preservation Awards, 2003

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Size: 40,000 sf
Budget: $1.6 million


Architecture, Historical Preservation

College Hall

Temple University | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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