Monday, December 19, 2011

It's Official -- Congrats to Cornell and Technion!

Mayor Bloomberg of NYC has chosen Cornell University in partnership with Technion - Israel Institute of Technology to build a $2 billion graduate school of applied sciences it was just announced in The New York Times. Congrats to both institutions on this achievement that may spawn a Silicon Valley II in one of my favorite cities in the world.

According to Bloomberg, this project, to be constructed on Roosevelt Island will be transformative.

According to the article: The school, which will not be fully built for 30 years, calls for 2,000 students, 300 faculty members and two million square feet on a patch of city-owned land that now houses a little-known hospital. In addition, the universities are offering a $150 million fund for startups begun on the campus that remain in New York for three years.

There was some major drama surrounding this competition, since Stanford University, considered another top contender, pulled out last Friday and The Chronicle of Higher Education had a provocative article emailed out this morning, entitled, "Stanford's Dream of 'Silicon Valley II' Dissolves Into Angry Recrimination."

Best of luck to Cornell and Technion and a salute to Mayor Bloomberg for his promotion of science and engineering!

How exciting that Cornell’s plan calls for 500,000 square feet of public space and partnerships with the public school system, including math and science support for at least 10,000 students.

I very much enjoyed the quote of Cornell’s president, Dr. David J. Skorton, “This is a story of connectivity — of connectivity between people and their ideas, between researchers and business people, between students and their dreams.” “This is an exercise in inclusion and having all the ships rise in this fine city. New York City is positioned to become the new technological capital of the world.”

I have a fondness for Cornell having been there multiple times to give invited talks and I even served on the National Allocation Committee for the NSF Supercomputer Center there before it lost its funding. Last time I was at Cornell was this past summer.

I am sure that the champagne is flowing in Ithaca and in NYC.

You can read the press release here.