Despite a credit crunch and a looming debt ceiling, New York's colleges and universities are in the middle of a building boom, with institutional development continuing apace. (The skyrocketing tuition doesn't hurt, wink!) In a city with limited new land to use, how are schools becoming key players in the real estate game? According to Mitchell Moss for The Architect's Newspaper, aggressively and cleverly: "eminent domain, rezoning, leasing, trading air rights, public-private partnerships, strategic acquisitions, and, of course, contributing space for public purposes."
By the numbers:
· Cooper Union has owned the land under the Chrysler Building since 1902, a tax-exempt status that allows the building to pay the university instead of the taxman.
· Employment by local private colleges and universities accounts for more than 3% of all private sector wage and salary jobs in the city; that number has grown by 77% over the past two decades.
· SVA’s diffuse campus is 900,000 square feet in total, spread across 16 buildings located mainly in the Chelsea and Flatiron neighborhoods.
· Columbia’s new 17-acre Manhattanville campus will add 6.8 million square feet to the university’s holdings.