Stanford and city could not agree over tech campus requirements, university discloses

Administrators from Stanford University have finally responded to questions about the university’s Dec. 16 withdrawal of StanfordNYC, its $2.5 billion proposal to build a graduate school of applied sciences and engineering in New York City, Stanford Daily reported, citing additional requirements by the city that could not be agreed upon.

“From the beginning, Stanford expressed an interest in the project with the clear understanding that it had to benefit both Stanford and New York City,” the university said in a press release. “We were very much hoping for a successful outcome, but it became apparent that there were areas where the city and university were not going to agree. Beyond the academic part of the proposal, the project involved numerous land use, real estate, zoning, construction timetables with significant penalties and other details.”

Stanford also said it was not willing to take on the degree of risk necessary for the project to go ahead. It had already spent $3 million on the proposal by the time it pulled out, Stanford Daily said.

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

“In a project of this nature, involving a significant investment by both the city and a much larger investment by the university, both sides need to be willing to accept a certain level of risk,” the release said. “Ultimately, we decided we could not accept the level of risk that the city wanted us to accept.”

Cornell University was eventually selected to build a 2 million-square-foot applied science and engineering campus on Roosevelt Island, in partnership with Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. [Stanford Daily]