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Cornell's Tech Campus Moves Forward With Community Board Support

By Aidan Gardiner | December 20, 2012 1:09pm

UPPER EAST SIDE — Exactly one year after Cornell University won the bid to build a state of the art campus on Roosevelt Island, Community Board 8, which covers the area, approved the school's plans, pushing it one step closer to completion.

The city announced on Dec. 19, 2011, that Cornell beat out six other universities for the right to build a technology school where the city-owned Coler-Goldwater Specialty Hospital once stood.

But before the school—dubbed Cornell NYC Tech—could be built, its plans need to undergo an extensive review and approval process involving various community organizations and city agencies.

Then Wednesday night, Community Board 8 approved the plans, sending them next to the Manhattan Borough President and eventually the City Council.

“We are appreciative for the support of our new neighbors and assure them that the construction and operation of the campus will be handled in a way that protects, respects and welcomes the rest of the Island," Cornell Tech Vice President Cathy Dove said in a statement. 

The graduate school won't open until 2017 with a partially built campus, but classes will begin in January 2013 at the school's temporary location in Google's Chelsea location.

"We’ll be debuting a new curriculum built on academic excellence, interdisciplinary focus and entrepreneurial spirit, all with the goal of spurring innovation and supporting economic growth in New York and beyond,” Dean Dan Huttenlocher said in a statement.

The full campus is slated to open in 2037 and could occupy up to 2 million square-feet, cost $2 billion, and house as many as 2,500 students and nearly 300 faculty members.

It's also intended to become the east coast's largest net-zero energy facility using an array of solar panels to produce as much energy as the school uses.

“This is such an exciting time and place to be launching Cornell Tech," Huttonlocher said.