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Columbia University Says Land Use Review Process Provides
Opportunity for Progress and Public Engagement in Proposed Expansion

Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger today issued the following statement in response to the City Planning Commission’s certification of the University’s application for the rezoning of the old Manhattanville manufacturing zone in West Harlem (read Bollinger's letter to the Columbia community):

Site plan for the Manhattanville expansion project
Final Phase: Proposed growth by 2030.
(Click image to enlarge)

“The city’s formal land use review process will give local citizens many opportunities to make their voices heard over approximately the next seven months as we consider how to provide the needed space for Upper Manhattan to remain a world-class academic center – providing the next generation of good jobs and great ideas that have always made New York special.

“This comes after more than three years of consultative meetings Columbia has held with community members, civic leaders, public officials, faculty, and students. That is exactly as it should be when it comes to a major project that would generate 6,000 new University jobs and the equivalent of 1,200 construction jobs a year for the next quarter century, along with enhanced education and health care, new cultural and civic spaces for Upper Manhattan.

“Columbia is also engaged in productive discussions with the West Harlem Local Development Corporation to craft a community benefits agreement that expands the many tangible benefits a global research university already brings to its own local community.

“As former Mayor David Dinkins recently wrote in the New York Times, Columbia's proposal to revitalize the old Manhattanville manufacturing zone into a wisely planned urban environment for teaching and learning is an important opportunity to enhance the mutually beneficial ways the University and West Harlem can grow together in the decades ahead.”

Dinkins' opinion piece is available for subscribers of the New York Times, or click here for a summary.

Anyone who wants to learn more about Columbia's proposal should visit the Manhattanville planning Web site. This site is in both English and Spanish and will be updated regularly as we move through ULURP.

Published: June 18, 2007
Last modified: Jul 19, 2007