Along the two blocks of North 17th Street on either side of the Vine Street Expressway in Center City, remarkably different financial trajectories of two religious groups are playing out.
At the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia, south of Vine, church leaders are turning property accumulated over generations – such as cemeteries – into cash in a bid to fill huge financial gaps.
About a block north, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced plans this week to build a meetinghouse and a 32-story residential tower next door to its $70 million temple, already under construction. The apartment tower alone could cost $75 million to $90 million, a real estate expert said.
Where do the Mormons get the money?