UAlbany taking a step forward on the Schuyler Building conversion, just not as far as it hoped

former Albany High School now UAlbany building

Quick update on UAlbany's plan to convert the Schuyler Building into the home for its new engineering college...

UAlbany did not get the $20 million it was seeking for the project as part of the state budget. But the university said this week it has gathered up enough funding for the exterior work on the building it had planned for later this year, including new windows and some masonry touch-ups. (You might notice the scaffolding going up in a few months.) Other exterior work -- such as roof repair -- had already been in progress.

The overall plan for the Schuyler Building -- a former Albany school district school building adjacent to the UAlbany downtown campus at Western and Lake -- is a $60 million renovation that would convert the space so it could house the new College of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

UAlbany had requested the $20 million during this past budget cycle to pay for the first phase of the interior renovations. University spokesman Karl Luntta said this week via email that UAlbany is still in the hunt for that full $20 million.

ualbany engineering college downtown campus rendering cropped
A UAlbany rendering of what the converted building could look like.

This is the second budget cycle in which UAlbany hasn't gotten the money. University officials had been hoping that the school's growing enrollment -- along with the potential revitalization potential of placing as many as 2,000 students and faculty in a facility in the heart of Albany's mid section -- would catch the attention of the state legislature.

The College of Engineering and Applied Sciences formally started July, 2015, growing out of the former he former College of Computing and Information. This school year it has 800 students -- 300 of them in computer engineering, the school's first engineering degree program.

Other degree programs are in development: electrical engineering, environmental engineering, bioengineering, mechanical engineering, and industrial and systems engineering.

The college got a boost earlier this year when an anonymous donor pledged $4 million to it, which the college will use to set up endowed professorships and graduate student fellowships as part of an effort recruit faculty. There about two dozen faculty already on board with the college.

CEAS is currently located on UAlbany's uptown campus, finding space where it can. As Kim Boyer, the college's dean, told us in March if they didn't land the $20 million during this budget process: "We just keep on keepin' on. I don't see any realistic way we could hit the pause button. "

Earlier on AOA:
+ Checking in on UAlbany's plan to convert the Schuyler Building in Albany into the home of its new engineering college
+ Imagining possible futures for the neighborhood around UAlbany's downtown campus

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

What's All Over Albany?

All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.

Search

Recently on All Over Albany

Photos from the 2018 Women's March in Albany

Thousands of people gathered in West Capitol Park in Albany Saturday afternoon for a second Women's March, a follow-up to a similar event a year... (more)

A big step forward for the Quackenbush Center mixed-use project, and other exciting tales of the Albany Planning Board

That big mixed-use project proposed for just north of Quackenbush Square in downtown Albany took an important step forward this week when the city planning... (more)

Belt Line 3

The owners of Roux in Slingerlands are planning to open a new restaurant in a space on Hamilton Street in Albany, just up from the... (more)

Stuff to do this weekend

We're in that January lull in the Capital Region -- those couple of weeks after the holidays when things slow down just a touch. But... (more)

Morning Blend

Call for Troy police reform + Prompted by the recent state Attorney General's office report about the fatal police shooting of Edson Thevenin, activists gathered... (more)