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Bronx Community College students, faculty and administrators enjoying architectural beauty, grandness of school's new library

The New York Times

Iris Weinshall, CUNY facilities planning and management vice chancellor

The new North Hall and Library at Bronx Community College had scarcely been open a day when Dorian Whyte, 21, and Jang Sung Soo, 22, sat down last week to study physics on the light-filled balcony wrapping around an enormous central reading room. Neither had any books in front of him. But they were evidently enjoying the place.

“Having this come into the Bronx is such a great idea, especially at a community college,” Mr. Whyte said. “It gives you a great initiation into what a real school is.”

North Hall is the first big, new building on the 43-acre University Heights campus since 1970, when it was the uptown division of New York University. It is also the first academic building that the college, a unit of the City University of New York, has had constructed for its own, instead of inheriting as a hand-me-down.

There is a generosity to the building’s features and finishes that communicates a message: the Bronx matters. North Hall was designed by Robert A. M. Stern Architects, known for its interpretations of Classical design. The main reading room was modeled on the double-barreled Bibliothèque Ste.-Geneviève in Paris, by Henri Labrouste.
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