After completing feasibility and master plan studies for City College’s new South Campus in Harlem, KPF was selected to develop a state-of-the-art design for the Advanced Science Research Center (ASRC), the first new building project on the campus. The ASRC will offer the City University of New York (CUNY) a new multi-disciplinary academic research facility with laboratories, classrooms, faculty and administrative offices, café and on-site retail amenities. The two buildings that comprise the new ASRC complex form a gateway to the South Campus.
The ASRC is unique because it is part of a traditional campus embedded within the urban context of Manhattan’s historic Harlem neighbourhood. On an elevated rock outcropping and along St. Nicolas Park, a linear and topographic landscape, the South Campus benefits from spectacular views in three directions. The ASRC’s fluid geometric forms take inspiration from gorge formations in the surrounding landscape. Each of the two buildings in the first phase of the ASRC design accommodate 200,000 sq ft of assignable area for flexible research laboratories, laboratory support spaces, shared specialty core facilities, faculty and administrative offices and on-site retail amenities.
The buildings are designed to accommodate a wide range of research initiatives, through the use of a modular utility 'infrastructure' that can be modified at the laboratory space to support specific research requirements. The ASRC will provide new research laboratories for the more environmentally demanding research activities that cannot be accommodated by renovating the existing facility. The two ASRC buildings will be connected at the base by a number of shared facilities, including a vivarium, a receiving area, building support activities, and various core facilities such as Imaging Modalities, behavioral studies and cryo-physics.