City Council has approved Cornell’s two-million-square-foot tech campus planned to break ground in 2014 on New York’s Roosevelt Island. Masterplanned by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM), the ambitious carbon positive campus will offer housing for 2,000 full-time graduate students, world-class education facilities, a hotel, a corporate co-location building, and more than an acre of public open space. Construction will commence with the first, state-of-the-art academic building that will be designed by Thom Mayne, founder ofMorphosis, who will incorporate the latest environmental advances, such as geothermal and solar power, to achieve net-zero energy for the landmark structure. Although generally supportive of the plan, residents of Roosevelt Island expressed concerns that the 23-year, phased project would congest small communities infrastructure: one road and a single bridge connecting the island to the city. In response, Cornell and the Bloomberg administration have promised to transport construction equipment via barge to limit traffic on the island's main road and monitor air quality throughout the process to ensure pollution is kept to a minimum.
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