Northwest Corner Building

As science and technology play increasingly significant roles in shaping our lives and the world in which we live, critical questions and problems can only be solved by scientific research and education that cross interdisciplinary lines.

To catalyze interdisciplinary research and education where the frontiers of biology, chemistry, physics and engineering and applied science converge, Columbia University opened the new Northwest Corner Building in Fall 2010.

Designed by the Pritzker prize-winning Spanish architect José Rafael Moneo, the Northwest Corner Building connects Chandler (chemistry) and Pupin (physics and astronomy), Schapiro (engineering), Mudd (engineering and applied science) and Fairchild (biology).  Serving as a physical and intellectual bridge, linking laboratories and maximizing the ready sharing and exchange of ideas, resources and information, the building has enhanced existing collaborations and stimulated new ones. 

By way of examples, in the Northwest Corner are the laboratories of:

·         a strong nucleus of Columbia’s Nanoscience Community, drawn from Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Applied Physics and Biology, including the leadership of the NSF-sponsored Materials Research Science & Engineering Center

·         the leadership of the Data Science Institute, a partnership of nine schools at Columbia that embraces an interdisciplinary approach to develop the technologies critical to unlocking the power of global data to help solve some of society’s most challenging problems.

·         the leadership of the NeuroTechnology Center (NTC), created in response to President Obama’s BRAIN initiative, the NTC draws together interdisciplinary investigators to develop advanced optical, electrical and computational technologies for the study of complex neurobiological systems and to train students, post-doctoral fellows and faculty in the newest neurotechnologies.  Faculty are from the School of Arts & Sciences, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Zuckerman Mind, Brain, and Behavior Institute and the Kavli Institute for Brain Science

Fully occupied, the Northwest Corner Building will provide research and education space for a community of 250 to 300 interdisciplinary faculty and students on its seven laboratory floors.  In addition, the Northwest Corner Building houses the Integrated Science Library that combines the formerly separate biology, chemistry, physics & astronomy and psychology libraries, a lecture hall that seats 170, a class room, and a café.

This comprehensive center demonstrates the University's commitment to scientific discovery and teaching.  With its welcoming façades facing both the campus and 120th street, the new building also provides an important portal to Manhattanville.  To date, we have received significant gifts from an anonymous donor and the Sherman Fairchild and Booth Ferris Foundations.