Columbia University, Department of Chemical Engineering, School of Engineering and Applied Science

New York, New York

  • FIRM

    BL Companies


    Columbia University

  • AREA

    7,500 sq.ft.





This project is an integral part of the university’s decision to recreate the department as an internationally recognized center of research. Previously, chemical engineering had been absorbed into a combined department, and its physical and intellectual identity had dissipated.

The scope includes renovations on two floors:

•The main floor, which gathers together ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCOST PER SQ FT$105.00FEATURED IN2004 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYAdministrative Areas/Offices for 12 faculty and four staff members; 14 adjuncts and teaching assistants; a student library; and two electronic classrooms for 35 and 60 students.

•A separate research enclave and laboratory.

The image of the new space is one of a cutting-edge place of learning; it shuns the uninviting feel of a typical engineering facility. It is a place that stimulates intellectual exchange and enhances departmental identity.

The design maximizes the positive aspects of the building shell with its high ceilings and abundant natural light. A reception area, integrated with the existing structure, terminates the path from the elevators. Generous common areas on either side connect to glazed conference rooms. This sequence creates an axis across the width of the building, and high-level glazing to perimeter offices allows light to filter into the center.