Site of 600 West 125th Street; Map data © 2019 Google
Columbia University this week filed plans to build a 34-story residential building in Harlem, as the school continues its campus expansion into the neighborhood. According to documents filed with the city’s Department of Buildings, the project at 600 West 125th Street, formerly home to a McDonald’s, would measure just under 400 feet tall and contain 142 apartments. But as Gothamist reported on Wednesday, local residents argue the plan breaks a longstanding promise from the university to redevelop a public school at the site.
More than ten years after it was first proposed, the expansion of Columbia University into Manhattanville is finally coming together, with its first building opening on Harlem’s west side. While some residents worried the expansion would infringe on the Harlem community, the president of the university, Lee Bollinger, said the ongoing construction will result in roughly $6.3 billion in local investment. As the Daily News reported, the school paid $578 million to minority-, women-, and locally owned firms for construction work in the last five years. The project also created more than 1,500 construction jobs each year.
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