Volume 79, Number 15 | September 16 - 22, 2009
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Cooper Union goes ‘green’ with a new lab building

Officials from The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art and other local officials held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday for the East Village school’s new, energy-efficient, “green” lab building at 41 Cooper Square (Third Ave.) between Sixth and Seventh Sts.

Designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Thom Mayne, of Morphosis, the nine-story, 175,000-square-foot, full-block structure boasts reconfigurable, state-of-the-art classrooms, laboratories, studios and public spaces, replacing more than 40 percent of the college’s academic space. The $150 million building houses the Albert Nerken School of Engineering and Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, along with student and teaching studios and common spaces that will serve Cooper Union’s School of Art and the Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture. The building is anticipated to meet gold LEED standards with the target of achieving platinum certification, the highest-level rating. 

“For 150 years, The Cooper Union has been guided by the spirit of creativity and innovation, fully realized in the execution of our extraordinary, high-performance, inspirational academic building,” said Dr. George Campbell Jr., The Cooper Union’s president. “The college’s longstanding commitment to excellence will flourish at 41 Cooper Square, a truly unique and environmentally sophisticated space that fosters academic, intellectual and social engagement,” Campbell said.

The college has provided a full-tuition scholarship, now valued at $35,000 per year, to every accepted student since 1859. 

Pictured at right, from left: Assemblymember Deborah Glick; Bob Hawks, Cooper Union vice president for business affairs and treasurer; architect Thom Mayne; engineering student Wallace Torres; Seth Pinsky, president, New York City Economic Development Corporation; Cooper Union President George Campbell Jr.; Ronni Denes, Cooper Union vice president for external affairs; Maryann Nichols, president, Cooper Union Alumni Association; Richard Stock, engineering professor; associate architects Peter Samton and Jordan Gruzen, of Gruzen Sampton LLP; Frank Sciame, of F.J. Sciame Construction Co., Inc.; and Ronald Drucker, chairperson, Cooper Union board of trustees. Below left, the building’s grand staircase. Below right, a view from the southwest showing 41 Cooper Square at right, and the school’s Foundation Building at left.

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