Thursday, October 27, 2011

Stanford Proposes $2.5 Billion Campus Roosevelt Island

Stanford University submitted plans Wednesday to build a $2.5 billion, 1.9-million-square foot tech campus on Roosevelt Island. The 10-acre campus would open in 2016, housing 200 faculty and 2,000 students. Cornell University is vying for the same site.

The Palo Alto, Calif.–based university's 600-page submission says it will commit an initial $200 million towards the Roosevelt Island campus to cover start-up costs and create an endowment to support research on the campus. If the proposal is chosen by the Bloomberg administration, Stanford would launch a $1.5 billion, 10-year fundraising campaign to finance the new campus and build the endowment. The project would create more than 7,000 construction jobs.

Called Stanford-NYC, the campus would be built out over 30 years and focus on graduate-level teaching and research in engineering, technology and entrepreneurship, with an emphasis on turning research into viable businesses. The academic program will initially focus on finance and media, industries where the city is already strong.

“StanfordNYC has the potential to help catapult New York City into a leadership position in technology, to enhance its entrepreneurial endeavors and outcomes, diversify its economic base, enhance its talent pool, and help our nation maintain its global lead in science and technology,” said John Hennessy, the university's president.

Stanford's schools of engineering and business, institute of design and technology ventures program would participate in the city campus, which would be an extension of Stanford's Palo Alto operation. If 50% of the university's track record in Silicon Valley is replicated here, the campus could create some 100,000 jobs.

Stanford would launch its program at the City College of New York, beginning in 2013 as the Roosevelt Island campus is built. It plans to partner with K-12 schools as part of a community engagement program outlined in its proposal.

Cornell University, which also wants to build a campus on Roosevelt Island, earlier this week unveiled details of a proposal with the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology for a campus that would grow over time to 2.12 million square feet. The Cornell-Technion proposal, which must be submitted this week, will include plans for a 150,000-square-foot building that, if built today, would be the largest net-zero energy building in the eastern U.S. Their plan calls for ambitious use of solar energy and geothermal wells and 500,000 square feet of public green space.

Other proposals are expected to come from Columbia University, a consortium led by New York University and a partnership between Carnegie Mellon University and Steiner Studios. None of those groups have asked for land on Roosevelt Island.

Crain's New York Business