The Bloomberg Center
Roosevelt Island, N.Y.   
Award of Merit

Owner: Cornell University
Lead Design Firm: Morphosis Architects
General Contractor/Construction Management: Barr & Barr Inc.
Civil Engineer: Muesser Rutledge Consulting Engineers
Structural Engineer: ARUP
MEP Engineer: ARUP

The Bloomberg Center, a four-story, 150,000-sq-ft academic building, is the showpiece of Cornell Tech’s 12-acre campus on Roosevelt Island. One judge called the project “the intersection of art and engineering.”

The superstructure is steel framed with polished concrete decks, and its facade is a custom unitized metal panel and glass wall system, featuring a four-story, elliptical, glass-enclosed staircase.

The team took frequent trips to Mexico and Kansas City to inspect fabrication, and they used VIM modeling to attain the geometry of steel tubes. Complex steel fabrication as well as metal and glass fabrication required collaboration and pre-assembly at an offsite location.

The building is heated and cooled by a closed loop geothermal system, while 18 ft above the roof is a solar array comprised of approximately 40,0000 sq ft of photovoltaic panels, which are incorporated as an integral design feature of the building.

The campus is on the southern portion of the island; the only road access is through a residential community. To minimize traffic and disruption, a barge system that began at the Brooklyn Navy Yard was used to deliver larger pieces of equipment and substantial materials through all phases of the process, making round-the-clock deliveries possible.

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