Date: Thursday, December 8, 2016
From: NYU President Andrew Hamilton  

Dear Fellow NYU Community Members,

At today's University Senate meeting, the architects working on the 181 Mercer St. project presented an update on their work, sharing their current designs for the building, as well information about it many uses.

I believe this is a building that will serve the NYU community — our students, our faculty, and our staff — extraordinarily well.

As a career academic, I have visited many university campuses over the years. It is difficult to think of another school with a more acute need for academic space than NYU. This new building will provide a range of needed teaching spaces, allowing us to decompress other overburdened buildings and to enhance the quality of the education we offer to our students.

181 Mercer will add nearly 60 new classrooms, easing the challenge we have long had of matching classes with properly sized and equipped rooms. It will at long last give young performing arts students in Tisch and Steinhardt practice, rehearsal, and performance spaces that are in line with the caliber of their programs. It will give our campus a modern gym to serve our student/athletes and the fitness needs of the rest of us. It will provide much-needed housing for both students and faculty.

And the building serves other academic priorities, over the long run. It will become our largest educational facility, and the creation of the dozens of new classrooms will later permit for the creation of more laboratories in Silver, as part of our long-range efforts to boost the sciences at NYU.

If you are interested in learning more about it, I invite you to come to the Open House on the 5th Floor of the GCASL building (238 Thompson St) from noon to 2:00 pm today.

If you cannot come by the Open House event today, there is a website with information that reflects today’s updates from the architects. And in the new year, we will launch the "181 Mercer St. Open House Space" at Washington Square Village Building 2, on West 3rd Street between Mercer Street and LaGuardia Place. That facility — featuring renderings, schematics, and models — will be open to the public and the NYU community, will have walk-in hours, and will remain open for the duration of the construction.

I know that this has been the subject of much debate over the past several years. I hope that these continuing updates will underscore what a worthwhile and beneficial project this is for NYU, and its importance in helping fulfill our academic mission.


Andy Hamilton