Transformative Process

From New Classrooms with State-of-the-Art Technology to Revamped Study Spaces in the Library, the NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering is Updating Its Look for the Next Age of Discovery

The NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering and its home in the MetroTech Center—dreamt up by Brooklyn Borough President Howard Golden and then Polytechnic University President George Bugliarello in the mid-1970s—have experienced profound transformations through the decades. Where there were once elevated train tracks for the Myrtle Ave. El, there now lies a bustling four-lane road; Rogers Hall, once the site of a razor factory, now houses some of the most exciting engineering research going on in the country.

Since 2010, the then-named i2e Campus Transformation has been reshaping and updating the School of Engineering with projects like outfitting newly acquired academic spaces at Two MetroTech to the opening of the Center of Innovation for Technology and Entertainment (CITE) to renovating restrooms and corridors. This year, a new phase has begun: Let us take you on a tour of the most exciting improvements and changes happening at the NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering.

Dibner Library

The Dibner Building, home to the Bern Dibner Library and built in 1991 at MetroTech Center, is at the heart of intellectual life at the NYU School of Engineering. Dedicated in 1992 in honor of alum Bern Dibner, the library is a buzzing landscape of young engineers and innovators day and night. Recently the space has 

experienced a profound transformation: Most stacks have been removed, with the material digitalized or available by request, and the floor packed with more study spaces, new computers, and a flood of sunlight from the windows. Seating capacity has increased by nearly 30% to include 294 new workstations with power outlets for charging electronic devices, carrels for individual study and tables for groups, and the space has been revised with fresh furnishings, carpeting, and paint.


Rogers Hall

When the massive Rogers Hall was converted from the American Safety Razor factory to an academic building able to house most services for what was then known as Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn in 1958, things like laboratories and classrooms were at the forefront of the minds of administrators and planners. Since then, the building has gone through several iterations, and currently houses many academic departments, the cafeteria, undergraduate academics, the STEM center, and the gymnasium, among other facilities. This year, high-impact projects have taken the building into a new era of research, learning, and student engagement with renovations to dining rooms, hallways, classrooms, and windows.

Hit the Books
Classroom renovations on the 2nd floor of Rogers Hall revamp academic life 

When construction of six new classrooms and upgrades to six existing rooms began this year it meant a few things: Moving classrooms to lower floors would alleviate demand on the building’s elevators by allowing students to use the stairs; lab renovations could begin on upper floors; and the classrooms themselves would welcome new furniture, flooring, windows, and paint, along with “smart” audio/visualsystems and new lecterns. Improvements to corridors and hallways—including new sound-absorbing wall structures and a student lounge—extend the transformative feeling outside the classroom.

Read It Here
The “Our Authors” publication display enlivens the first floor of Rogers Hall and the minds of aspiring engineers

This year a nearly 40-foot-long display with striking environmental wall graphics was installed on the first floor of Rogers Hall directly outside the cafeteria, where more than 80 publications from the school’s faculty are on view in a couple of contemporary display cases with embedded LED lights.


Café Culture
Cafeteria expands to include the private dining room, opening the new school year with fresh furnishings and new flooring

Once reserved for special events, the private dining room is now open to all and features new furniture, carpeting, and paint. The main cafeteria also has been updated with new wood-look flooring and furniture for eating and lounging.


Through the Looking Glass
A Massive Window Replacement Project Gives Rogers Hall a New Face

In an effort to elevate the building’s exterior appearance and efficiency, an ambitious project to replace the exterior windows of Rogers Hall began this year. Beginning with the Jay St.-facing side of the building and newly renovated classrooms, the window replacement finds 45 bays updated with 183 new windows as of the summer of 2014. The new windows meet the latest New York City specifications for wind resistance and are approximately four times more efficient at retaining heat than the previous windows.



What's Next? 

The transformation doesn’t stop there. In 2015, construction is expected to begin on labs on the upper floors in Rogers Hall for the new faculty hires. In the basement, a new student health center, which will incorporate counseling services, begins this fall. Coming up next year, the building will see Phase II of its window replacement project.

Nearby, Dibner Library will see the renovation of its fourth floor, which could include a new conference center, more collaborative study rooms for students, and an expansion of academic spaces.

Across the commons, historic Wunsch Hall began renovation in October of this year to house Graduate Admissions, Undergraduate Admissions, and the Wasserman Center for Career Development. 

There’s even more to come in the distant future. We hope you’ll stop by for a visit to witness it firsthand.