Columbia expansion review to begin

Columbia University’s long-held plans to build new facilities in a 17-acre section of Harlem will be subject to official review starting this month. Next Monday the Dept. of City Planning will publish the school’s application for a zoning change that would allow Columbia to construct new buildings up to 25 stories high. Community Board 9, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and the Planning Dept. will begin to review the proposal. “The moment has arrived,” says Stringer. “Columbia’s expansion will greatly benefit the city of New York. At the same time, we have an obligation to protect the surrounding community, and that’s what this process is all about.” The university will also have to negotiate with the state, as it is planning to seize some properties in its expansion footprint via eminent domain. The first phase of Columbia’s construction could begin as early as next year. more [Crain’s]

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