NEW YORK CITY—NYU has unveiled its plans to turn the long-dormant, city-owned 370 Jay St., in Downtown Brooklyn, into a modern, sustainable academic center. The refurbished building will be part of the University’s expanding engineering and applied sciences programs in Brooklyn. 

The 500,000 square-foot building—one of the city’s designated “genius schools” to help foster New York’s fledgling tech/innovation economy —will serve as the home of NYU’s Center for Urban Science and Progress. It also will house NYU’s highly-regarded entrepreneurial incubators, as well as additional classrooms and office space for various NYU programs.

The unoccupied 14-story building, which originally was home to the NYC Transit Authority, currently houses MTA communications equipment and sits above an active subway station. In its underutilized condition, the nearly vacant building has been an impediment to the full emergence of Brooklyn’s Downtown area  as a technological hub for New York City.

“Applied science, technology, and engineering are among our fastest growing academic areas and the new 370 Jay St.—in the heart of a thriving tech corridor—will be an environment conducive to inspiration and innovation in those fields,” says Lynne Brown, NYU senior vice president for University Relations and Public Affairs. “370 Jay Street will give us the opportunity to promote research and learning not just in Brooklyn, but with programs across the entire University.”

“The new 370 Jay Street will come alive with the sounds of learning and innovation as NYU’s CUSP becomes its latest and greatest tenant,” says Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams. “I am pleased to support a project that embraces sustainable construction and energy efficiency, as Brooklyn looks to be a leader in these areas. Our borough will continue to benefit from the great ideas that will emerge from 370 Jay Street, from world-class education to creative entrepreneurship.”

As part of the building’s upgrade, the full limestone and steel façade will be restored rather than replaced—reducing the amount of waste that would be sent to a landfill by approximately 4,000 cubic yards. More than 1,000 energy-efficient windows will be installed, adding a significant, sun-induced design element to the facade.

The building will undergo abatement and receive new mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems with a one-megawatt micro turbine.

CUSP will be on the top three floors of the 14-story building and the three incubators—Urban Future Lab in Downtown Brooklyn, Varick Street Incubator in Manhattan and the DUMBO Incubator—will be consolidated to the third floor. The remainder of the building will be used by NYU for classrooms and other academic uses, with the exception of 14,000 square of retail on the ground floor.

The project requires approval by the Public Design Commission and will begin construction in 2015. It is expected to be completed by 2017.