Key Official Would Trim N.Y.U. Plan to Expand

Ann McClure's picture
Monday, April 2, 2012

New York University is having a hard time selling its ambitious plan to expand its Greenwich Village campus to Scott M. Stringer, the Manhattan borough president, who is expected in the next two weeks to make a pivotal recommendation on the project’s future.

Mr. Stringer wants the university to scale down its proposal substantially before he will endorse it, people familiar with his thinking said.

Mr. Stringer is frustrated that N.Y.U., in his view, seems to be backpedaling on a 26-page proposal it put forward in January that indicated it could shrink its plan to erect four academic and dormitory buildings, whose total size would equal that of the Empire State Building, within two housing complexes south of Washington Square Park.

In Mr. Stringer’s view, N.Y.U. proposed a 2.2 million-square-foot expansion, but said it could live with 1.5 million square feet as long as it could locate the remaining 700,000 square feet elsewhere in its neighborhood, which the university defines as extending virtually from Canal Street to 23rd Street.

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