Cornell Tech Phase One Is Done and Proud of It

Cornell Tech Phase One Is Done and Proud of It

Cornell Tech Phase One is officially done, as the school announced yesterday. The ten year project was done so successfully, bragging was hardly needed. The naked results are clear enough.

by David Stone

The Roosevelt Island Daily News

What’s so great about Cornell Tech Phase One?

Dean Dan Huttenlocher lead the media on a pre-opening tour of the campus’s first buildings. Here, he points out features in the Bloomberg Center ©David Stone/The Roosevelt Island Daily News

“The Cornell Tech campus design brings together the best of New York City – from its researchers and students to startups and tech companies to the residents of Roosevelt Island and beyond,” said Greg Morrisett, Dean and Vice Provost of Cornell Tech. “Over the past decade, we have seen how valuable space for our communities to collaborate can be, as it has spurred innovation and provided us with the opportunity to see the impact of our work in the real world.”

Both the Verizon Executive Education Center and the Graduate Roosevelt Island Hotel opened in 2021, completing the 12-acre campus.

But the press release quickly pivoted to tangible results.

Cornell Tech Accomplishments Already Under Phase One

Since Cornell Tech was awarded the Applied Sciences Competition in December 2011 and opened its Roosevelt Island Facilities to students in September 2017, the campus has:

  • graduated 1,200 highly skilled tech alumni
  • launched more than 80 startups
  • 90% of which remained in New York, hiring nearly 400 employees and securing $150 million in funding
  • raised nearly $1 billion in funding
  • reached over 5,000 New York City K-12 students and 350 teachers through computer science education
  • increased the number of women pursuing computer science at CUNY through its Break Through Tech initiative
  • 84% more women have enrolled as CS majors
  • 98% more women have graduated with a bachelor’s degree in CS
Cornell Tech Canyon
On campus, the Cornell Tech Canyon displays the art in design without sacrificing purpose.

Structure built right…

As highlighted in the press release, Cornell designed these buildings for getting the results above:

  • The Emma and Georgina Bloomberg Center, designed by Morphosis Architects, is the first academic building, offering a variety of spaces designed to support different learning modes, incorporating cutting-edge sustainability features and commissioned art works.
  • The TATA Innovation Center, designed by WEISS/MANFREDI, is a first-of-its-kind building where an extraordinary mix of cutting-edge companies from diverse industries work alongside groundbreaking Cornell academic teams. 
  • The House, designed by Handel Architects and developed by The Hudson Companies and Related Companies, is the tallest and largest residential Passive House high-rise in the world. Cornell faculty, staff and students live at The House, giving the campus 24/7 activity.

For Roosevelt Island

Now, ten years after Cornell won the privilege of building a world class campus here, outreach into the local community has been a major bonus for residents.

Not only has the school shared many free lectures on technology, they’ve stepped in with contributions of service to the CBN/RI Senior Center as well as PS/IS 217. But on a more personal scale, Cornell Tech invites residents to stroll through. The grounds are graceful with plenty of places for sitting while breezes across both channels of the East River cool the summers. In winter, the campus slopes provide joy rides for kids on sleds.

In short, Roosevelt Island enjoys the pleasures of a well-made, people friendly campus while hosting world class activities affecting the rest of the world.

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