CUNY’s Fiterman Hall To Rise Again

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Many years have gone by since Muslim terrorists flew a pair of jetliners into the twin World Trade Center towers on September 11, 2001. In addition to murdering thousands of people, destroying several buildings, and thrusting the United States into a pair of wars; several businesses, homes, and schools were abandoned including Fiterman Hall belonging to the City University of New York (CUNY).

CUNYs Fiterman Hall following 9/11

CUNY's Fiterman Hall following 9/11

Fiterman Hall (pictured), once a fifteen story building located at 30 West Broadway, suffered irreversible damage when the 47-story 7 World Trade Center edifice – one of the smaller buildings in the WTC complex – fell over onto it. The CUNY building plus the nearby Deutsche Bank structure suffered extensive collateral damage from the WTC attacks.

The bank building still stands, but it won’t be torn down until human remains recently found within it have been removed. A 2007 fire at the bank building killed two NYC firefighters; subsequently the remains of hundreds of WTC victims was discovered.

From The Ashes

Meanwhile, the old Fiterman Hall is no more, having finally been cleansed of all toxic substances and torn down just before Thanksgiving. In its place will rise a new $325 million 14-story building with 96 classrooms, scheduled to open in early 2012.

The Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) is part of the CUNY system with Fiterman Hall making up about one-third of the community college’s instructional space. When the attacks happened, BMCC had to scramble to find additional classroom space, a challenging order given the number of displaced businesses in the area forced to do the same.

Removing Hazardous Materials

According to CUNY, before the old hall could be torn down “…asbestos material — which had coated the inner walls — had to be ground off so that hazardous dust would not be created. The process required small tents around the work areas and strict adherence to environmental codes, according to CUNY officials. Crevices were filled and smoothed so no dust could reenter. The structure was stripped to its concrete and steel skeleton.”

The new Fiterman Hall will feature a mechanical rooftop penthouse. According to the college, “Its exterior will be constructed of brick and glass and an aluminum curtain wall. The building will feature high speed elevators and escalators to move students quickly to classrooms, computer labs, a gallery exhibiting the Fiterman family’s art collection and other displays, and a public café in the lobby. There will be two public entrances, including one facing a park and the World Trade Center site.”

Pictured: Wikipedia public domain photo.

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