LTSP and the Community

The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia is part of the Mt. Airy neighborhood of Northwest Philadelphia. Mt. Airy and the Northwest have a long history of embracing diversity and being a center of vibrant city life. The seminary's 14 acre campus has been cited by the Arbor Day Foundation as a Tree Campus USA, and is the center of activity of both the seminary and the surrounding community. East Mt. Airy Neighbors, one of a number of active community groups in the Northwest, has its offices on campus, and the offices of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America are here as well. William Allen Plaza, located at the corner of campus adjacent to the Shaeffer-Ashmead Chapel, is a public space with trees and benches that hosts community events throughout the year as well as being a public space to sit and watch life on Germantown Avenue (or just "the Avenue"). The Brossman Center was intentionally built to serve not just the needs of the seminary but as to be a venue for community events, public and private. Community groups, civic groups, churches and individuals regularly hold events on campus, from small meetings to weddings and large gatherings.

Many LTSP faculty and staff, as well of course as our students, live on campus and in the community, worship at area churches, and send their children to area schools and community activities. You are as likely to run into colleagues in neighborhood stores and restaurants or talking a walk in the neighborhood as you are to see them on campus. It is the nature of Mt. Airy to feel you are in the city, but not "in the city."

A number of community groups and local media can help acquaint you with Mt. Airy, Chestnut Hill (our neighbor north on the Avenue), Germantown (our neighbor to the south), and the surrounding area and city. It is the nature of the community to find residents who are members of a number of groups, and for groups to cooperate in a number of ways, and for neighborhood groups to be models for similar organizations in other cities. Seminary faculty and staff serve on boards and committees of comunity organizations throughout the Northwest. Explore some of their websites to get a flavor of the community:

East Mt. Airy Neighbors (EMAN) - community association with members living on the east side of Germantown Avenue, with offices on the LTSP campus

West Mt. Airy Neighbors (WMAN) - community association with members living on the east side of Germantown Avenue

Mt. Airy USA - concentrates on neighborhood development for businesses and residents

Chestnut HIll Community Association (CHCA) - community assocaition concentrating on Chestnut Hill, though a number of members reside in Mt. Airy

Neighborhood Interfaith Movement (NIM) - with headquarters in Mt. AIry, NIM brings people from all faith traditions together to serve children, families, and vulnerable and older adults

Mt. Airy Learning Tree (MALT) - MALT has a 30 year tradition of "neighbor teaching neighbor" classes, some hosted on the LTSP campus

Weavers Way Coop - a true community based, non-profit coop, Weavers Way has locations in Mt. Airy, Chestnut Hill and Ogontz, and operates community farms and learning activities in the area.

Media resources with an emphasis on the Northwest:

Newsworks - a "hyperlocal" news project operated by public broadcaster WHYY, Newsworks has special area reporters and coverage of Northwest Philadelphia neighborhoods as well as covering the region

Mt. AIry Patch - Patch is a "hyperlocal" service of Yahoo's Patch brand; there are several Patch sites covering the Northwest and surrounding communities

Chestnut HIll Local - the Local is owned by the Chestnut Hill Community Association but is editorially independent from the Association, with both a weekly print edition that highlights Mt. Airy and Chestnut Hill news and has an excellent features section and an active website with many resources with information on the Northwest. The Local is mailed to subscribers including Chestnut Hill Community Association members and sold in area stores and honor boxes

Germantown Newspapers - The Northwest Independent and Germantown Chronicle are bi-monthly free newspapers and an accompanying website, for profit, community based and owned, that were started to fill a void when several community newspapers closed

The Shuttle - originally the newspaper for Weavers Way coop members, the monthly Shuttle expanded its coverage and to free distribution to households in the Northwest when several community newspapers closed

Area Municipalities - all are a walk, bike ride, public transit ride or short car trip from campus:

City of Philadelphia (other Philadelphia communities adjacent to Mt. Airy and Chestnut Hill include Germantown to the south; East Falls, Roxborough and Manayunk to the west (on the west side of the Wissahickon Valley, a large urban park and watershed adjacent to West Mt Airy and Chestnut Hill, and the northern part of Philadelphia's Fairmount Park); West Oak Lane to the east. Center City Philadelphia is an easy SEPTA Regional Ride from campus on either the Chestnut Hill East (Mt. Airy Station on Gowen Avenue) or Chestnut Hill West (Allens Lane Station on Allens Lane) lines)

School District of Philadelphia

Springfield Township (Montgomery County) - east of Mt Airy adjacent to Chestnut Hill

Cheltenham Township (Montgomery County) - east of West Oak Lane

Whitemarsh Township (Montgomery County) - north of Chestnut Hill

Conshohocken (Montgomery County) - northwest of Chestnut Hill/Rocksborough