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See Rockefeller University's Modular Expansion As It's Lowered Into Place

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Rafael Viñoly designed the university’s expansion over FDR Drive

Courtesy of Max Touhey for Turner Construction

Rockefeller University filed permits for its hard-won expansion on top of FDR Drive in February 2015, and construction on the Rafael Viñoly-designed facility is now in full swing. Max Touhey photographed the site for Turner Construction last night as cranes started hoisting the first and smallest of the development’s modular components—yes! It’s modular!—into place.

The modular units are being fabricated in Keasby, New Jersey, and are then stored in Newark as they await placement at the site, which spans from about 64th to 68th streets. The modular components, of which there are about a dozen, are being shipped in during slack tide and will placed between 12:30 and 4:30 a.m. on and off through August 23, during which FDR Drive will be closed.

When the facility is complete it will hold a research lab and a conference center. The project came in front of the community board in January 2014, when Rockefeller University agreed to ease locals woes about further restricting access to the east side’s starved waterfront by committing $8 million to the East River Esplanade.