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February 10, 2005


State Legislature Approves Funding for New Science, Architecture Facilities

NEW YORK, February 10, 2005 – An era of new construction, including three state-funded projects totaling more than $285 million, is about to get underway at The City College of New York (CCNY).  The efforts will lead to creation of a major science education and research center located in Harlem and a new home for CCNY’s School of Architecture, Urban Design and Landscape Architecture.  The projects included in the five-year state capital spending budget are in addition to ongoing renovations at CCNY to the Robert E. Marshak Science Building and other facilities as well as a dormitory to be built using private funds. 

“We are grateful to Gov. Pataki, the State Legislature and the CUNY administration for their strong commitment to The City College’s growth,” said Dr. Gregory H. Williams, President of The City College of New York, in announcing the projects.  “When I arrived at the College three-and-a-half years ago, I was frankly concerned about conditions in some of our buildings and laboratories.  At the same time that we increased enrollment, raised academic standards and saw the amount of funded research triple, we were able to work with receptive elected officials to guarantee that our facilities will support and expand these accomplishments.  This funding will ensure that we will become a center for advanced scientific and engineering research in New York State, and field the most exciting public school of architecture on the East Coast.”

            Major expansions at The City College include:

  • A new, 55,000 square-foot (Phase I) building for the CCNY Science Division, budgeted at $60 million.  The design phase will take place during the 2004 – 2005 fiscal year, with construction to begin in the 2006 – 2007 fiscal year and to be completed by 2009.
  • A 190,000 gross square-foot (Phase I) new CUNY science facility, which will house additional science laboratories for the University’s top researchers.  Design is slated to begin in January 2005 with completion of the building scheduled for 2010.  Total cost of the project is estimated at $176 million and it is fully funded in the five-year capital budget covering 2004 – 2009.
  • Conversion of 79,316 net assignable square feet of space in the “Y” Building on the CCNY campus into a new, $58.6 million home for the School of Architecture, Urban Design and Landscape Architecture, designed by Rafael Vinoly with state-of-the-art environmental features.  The budget includes $53.1 million for construction and equipment.  The state previously funded $5.1 million for the design phase.

The new science facilities will house many of the programs now at Marshak, which has been CCNY’s primary science building for over 30 years.  The Division of Science has outgrown Marshak due to increased research activity: when it was built, funded research in Marshak amounted to less than $1,000,000; last year CCNY faculty brought in $43 million in grants and funded projects.  Because its low floor-to-floor height impedes adequate placement of exhaust and ventilation systems, it was concluded that Marshak could not be renovated for long-term use as a research facility.

Long-range plans call for Marshak to house instructional laboratories, faculty offices, select research spaces, a science library for both CCNY’s Division of the Sciences and the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education and 42,000 square feet of classroom and computer study space.  This will allow CCNY to convert inadequate classroom space elsewhere on campus to more appropriate functions.

Since 1999, more than $21 million has been invested to upgrade Marshak’s boilers, install hot water circulation pumps, rehabilitate fuel tanks and improve its laboratory facilities.  More than $33 million has been earmarked between now and 2006 for projects at Marshak that include roof rehabilitation, facade work, new HVAC systems and upgraded fume hoods and fans.  The capital budget also included $10 million in FY 2008-2009 for design work on Marshak’s rehabilitation. 

The new facility for the School of Architecture, Urban Design and Landscape Architecture will include classroom space, design studios, faculty and administrative offices and student/faculty lounges.  It will allow the school, which is currently on three different floors in Shepard Hall, to deliver its entire instructional program in state-of-the-art facilities from one location and give the school a more visible presence on campus. 

Other projects underway at CCNY include exterior and interior renovations to the Shepard, Baskerville and Compton-Goethals buildings on the English Gothic quad.  In addition, the CUNY Board of Trustees has approving leasing land on The City College campus for construction of a privately funded 600-bed residence hall with an estimated cost of $50 million.

About The City College of New York

For over 157 years, The City College of New York has provided low-cost, high-quality education for New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines.  Over 12,200 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in the College of Liberal Arts and Science, the School of Education, the School of Architecture, the School of Engineering, and the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education.