NYC higher education institutions strong in construction activity

Report highlights expansion of John Jay College of Criminal Justice and Columbia's Manhattanville project

TRD New York /
Aug.August 02, 2011 12:36 PM

Public and private institutional investment in New York City remained strong even in the recession with new construction starts worth $11.4 billion from June 2008 to May 2011, according to a report released today by the American Building Congress.

Even though the value of new construction starts fell $3.2 billion between June 2010 and May 2011, the report notes that that figure did not include several large projects that had not officially been recorded as of May 31. Those include the $680 million Whitney Museum project near the High Line and Fordham University $250 million multi-use facility near Lincoln Center.  

Public institutions have been responsible for just over 50 percent of new construction starts over the past three years, the report notes. The New York City School Construction Authority was the largest driver of construction starts, initiating nearly $4.5 billion in projects over that three-year period. The health and hospital sector was responsible for $2.6 billion in construction starts, with more than three quarters of those initiated by private healthcare institutions.
In particular, the report spotlighted significant construction activity by public and private higher education institutions. According to the data, 75 percent of new construction starts, measured by value, were started by the City University of New York, the State University of New York or other government-related entities such as the New York Police Department’s new $250 million police academy in Flushing, Queens. 

Other recent examples include the $381 million CUNY Advanced Science Research Center, a new $222 million Boricua campus facility in the Bronx, and the $210 million reconstruction of Fiterman Hall. CUNY’s ongoing, five-year, $2.5 billion capital plan is “particularly encouraging,” the report says. It includes the $587 million expansion of John Jay College of Criminal Justice and a $400 million academy building for the New York City College of Technology. 

The activity by private institutions of higher education is “unprecedented,”according to the report. In June 2010, Columbia University cleared a last legal hurdle for its plans to expand its Manhattanville campus, a $6.3 billion expansion that will encompass 6.8 million square feet covering 17 acres.  Work on the first new facility, the $175 million Jerome L. Greene Science Center, started in May. 

Meanwhile, the report also notes that  New York University recently released its 20-year growth and development strategy that calls for the eventual construction of up to six million square feet of new facilities that would be located in the university’s historic Greenwich Village core as well as other parts of the city, such as Downtown Brooklyn and Governors Island. — Miranda Neubauer

Related Articles

600 West 125th Street (Credit: Google Maps, iStock)

Here are details on Columbia’s 34-story university housing tower

Mayor Bill De Blasio and Jeremy Reichberg (Credit: Getty Images, Alamy)

Convicted donor says de Blasio should have testified against developer

From left: Stephen Ross, Scott Rechler, Maryanne Gilmartin, Marty Burger and William Rudin (Credit: Anuja Shakya for The Real Deal)

Unions at bay, but hostility for real estate worse than ever

Gary LaBarbera and the Fordham Landing site (Credit: Google Maps)

Ambitious Bronx project gains powerful union ally

Ahmass Fakahany and 240 Centre Street's domed penthouse (Credit: Getty Images)

Domed penthouse at 240 Centre Street gets yet another price cut

From left: Dynamic Star CEO Gary Segal, renderings of Fordham Landing in the Bronx, and Dynamic Star Director of Development Brad Zackson (Credit: Google Maps and Dynamic Star)

Paul Manafort’s former real estate fixer is the driving force behind $3.5B Bronx megaproject plan

The scheme saw Jeremy Reichberg provide New York Police Department officers with gifts in exchange for favors (Credit: iStock)

De Blasio donor with ties to JSR’s Jona Rechnitz gets 4 years in prison for NYPD corruption scheme

Natural History Museum gets court clearance for $383M expansion

Natural History Museum gets court clearance for $383M expansion