November 13, 2008

Speaker Silver, Mayor Bloomberg Laud Progress On
BMCC Fiterman Hall Reconstruction

New Building With Much-Needed Classroom, Computer Lab and Faculty Space
To Rise on Site of Structure Damaged on September 11th

Speaker Silver and Mayor Bloomberg hold news conference on the rebuilding of Fiterman Hall, which was extensively damaged in the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Silver also was joined by Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and Antonio Perez, president, Borough of Manhattan Community College.

Speaker's Fitterman Announcement

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced today that the construction of a new Fiterman Hall at Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) in Lower Manhattan will begin next year.

The new 14-story building, which will provide much-needed classroom, computer lab and faculty space for BMCC, will replace a structure that was severely damaged as a result of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Speaker Silver and Mayor Bloomberg spoke today at a news conference, where renderings of the new building were presented.

"Our announcement today marks an essential step in the revitalization of Lower Manhattan. It is also great news for BMCC students, faculty and staff, and for everyone who lives and works in Lower Manhattan," said Silver (D-Manhattan). "I want to thank Mayor Bloomberg and the CUNY administration for their commitment to moving this project forward. I also want to note CUNY's focus on safety and security as they have dealt with the complex issues relating to the existing Fiterman Hall structure."

"I'm delighted that, as completion of the demolition phase of the project approaches, this new agreement will keep the momentum going for seamlessly pressing ahead with the next phases of work at the Fiterman Hall site," said Mayor Bloomberg.

Renovation of the current Fiterman Hall structure for BMCC classrooms and offices was nearly complete on September 11, 2001 when the building was irreparably damaged by the collapse of 7 World Trade Center. Decontamination and remediation of the current structure is under way now.

CUNY officials said that demolition of the current structure would begin upon completion of remediation work early next year, and is to be completed in late summer of 2009. Construction will start immediately thereafter, and the new Fiterman Hall - which will house classrooms, computer laboratories, faculty offices and an art gallery - is expected to be ready for occupancy by spring 2012.

During recent years, Speaker Silver has hosted monthly meetings in his office of the Fiterman Hall Community Advisory Committee with CUNY and state officials, government regulators and community representatives to ensure that Fiterman Hall was rebuilt in a safe and timely manner.

"With the increase of CUNY community students, BMCC is in desperate need of the classroom and administrative space it lost during the September 11th attacks," said Assembly Higher Education Committee Chair Deborah Glick. "In this year's budget the state committed funding for the decontamination, demolition and redevelopment of the Fiterman Hall site. We are hopeful that this new structure will be an enduring symbol of rebuilding efforts in Lower Manhattan."