Updated, 2:45 a.m.
The city has awarded New York University $15 million in its competition to build a new tech campus in New York—but it’s still negotiating with Columbia.
The University had submitted plans in October to build a 1.1 million-square-foot, three-building complex to advance the study of data sciences and engineering on its Manhattanville campus, but lost out to Cornell University, which won the grand prize of $100 million in December.
NYU plans to construct the Center for Urban Science and Progress in downtown Brooklyn on the site of a vacant building owned by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. The center’s first classes will begin in September 2013 in a temporary location.
“With the addition of this new campus, Brooklyn will be one of the most dynamic environments for entrepreneurs anywhere in the country,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a statement.
“We’re glad to see these efforts to help New York develop into an even more dynamic center of engineering excellence. Our own productive conversations with the City are continuing,” a University spokesperson said on Monday.
Since Cornell won the grant, administrators went back to the drawing board and downsized the plans to just one building.
Little progress has been made on the city’s end since December, administrators have said. In a March interview, Executive Vice President of Facilities Joe Ienuso said that he had no sense of when the mayor’s office would be in touch about the University’s revised proposal.
The announcement by Bloomberg and NYU President John Sexton came hours after the New Yorker published an article online that suggested the city’s lawyers were poor negotiators during the original request for proposals.
Stanford University, which was widely seen as the frontrunner to receive the $100 million, dropped out days before Cornell was awarded the winner. Stanford President John Hennessy was reportedly upset at what he felt were unreasonable deadlines and penalties being imposed on the school.
After seven universities submitted proposals, the city wanted the campus to be fully operational sooner than Hennessy thought was feasible, according to the New Yorker. Debra Zumwalt, Stanford’s general counsel, is quoted as saying, “I have been a lawyer for over thirty years, and I have never seen negotiations that were handled so poorly by a reputable party.”