Sisters of St. Francis finalize sale of former convent; developer Mark Congel will convert to apartments

The Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities released the following statement July 7:

The Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities today completed the sale of their property at Court Street and Grant Boulevard to developer Mark Congel, under the name of The Kimberly at Grant Blvd., LLC. The sale price was not disclosed.

The nearly eight-acre property houses six buildings, including a former chapel, structures that housed the former Franciscan Academy school and Maria Regina College and two former convents. Congel has said that he will eventually convert the campus into apartments, keeping as much of the original architecture of the building as possible.

Rochelle Cassella, director of congregational communications for the Sisters of St. Francis, said the sisters will remain on the property until August when work on new offices for the sisters on James Street is expected to be complete. Congel’s ownership, however, takes effect immediately.

The sisters put the property and all its buildings on the market last spring when the 96 sisters living in the convents moved to new housing on Buckley Road in Liverpool. Cassella said the Court Street campus, as the property is known, has far more space than the congregation required.

“This arrangement is a win-win. Our sisters have appropriate housing, the buildings will be repurposed to provide much-needed moderate income housing and the property returns to the tax rolls,” Cassella said.

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