In early January 2021, the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning received a $10 million endowment from M. Arthur Gensler and his family to support the future of the college's thriving New York City–based program, AAP NYC. The gift names the Gensler Family AAP NYC Center located on the 20th floor of the historic Standard Oil building at 26 Broadway in Manhattan.
The Gensler family's generosity and support see that this cornerstone program cofounded 15 years ago by Art Gensler will continue to strengthen AAP's commitment to engagement with the urban built environment. Their gift ensures that the education of the next generation of architects, artists, and planners remains grounded in experiences that enable them to make a deep and lasting impact on our communities, cities, and the world.
Please read more about this gift in the Cornell Chronicle.
AAP's program at the Gensler Family AAP NYC Center (AAP NYC) offers AAP students a unique opportunity to live and study in New York City, one of the most vital urban centers in the world for one semester. Enriched by field trips and social and professional networking opportunities, the undergraduate and graduate student semester in New York City plays a key role in a Cornell education.
Programming at the center offers a full roster of classes enriched by New York City's unique artistic, historical, and cultural resources and by AAP's extensive alumni network of noted metropolitan professionals, who frequently teach and serve as guest critics and mentors.
Study at AAP NYC is an option for bachelor of architecture (B.Arch.), bachelor of fine arts (B.F.A.), master of regional planning (M.R.P.), and master of landscape (M.L.A.) students, and mandatory for professional master of architecture (M.Arch.) and post-professional master of science in advanced architectural design (M.S. AAD) students.
AAP NYC provides the opportunity for bachelor of architecture (B.Arch.) students to study, work, and live in one of the world's most dynamic urban contexts. The B.Arch. program enables students to build on core curricular foundations using the city as a classroom and work with top-notch guest faculty and critics from the metro area.
The semester-long study option in New York City is available to fourth- and fifth-year B.Arch. students through a competitive application process.
B.Arch. students may opt for a two-day per week internship at a prestigious Manhattan firm, in addition to their classwork, giving them a chance to build work experience and experience the day-to-day operations of an urban firm.
ARCH 4101 Design VII or 4102 Design VIII or ARCH 5101 Design Xi
Advanced programs in architectural design, with options in, but not limited to, urban design, architectural technology, computational design, ecology, culture, and representation.
ARCH 5201 Professional Practice
Examination of organizational and management theories and practices for delivering professional design services. Includes a historic overview of the profession and a review of the architect's responsibilities from the pre-contract phase through cost estimating and specifications to construction. Application of computer technology in preparing specifications.
These two classes are complemented by electives for a total of 15–18 credits.
The AAP NYC semester is a collaboratively developed and conceptually linked plan of study with studio and theory classes and optional internships that utilize the remarkable resources of faculty members and the city. Faculty members include practicing artists, theorists, critics, and curators. Field trips to galleries, museums, and artist studios across New York City are integrated into the curriculum. Within the context of AAP NYC's class offerings, optional internship, and immersive exposure to contemporary art and artists, students get an inside look at the urban New York City art world. Each student has access to studio space where they are encouraged to develop work according to their independent practices and may take advantage of group exhibitions at the center.
The semester-long study option in New York City is offered in the spring and is available to second-year art majors through a competitive application process.
Art 3003 New York City Studio
This class will concentrate on the development, through research and material experimentation, of a studio practice informed by historical and social context. Different research and production methodologies will be encouraged to develop a practice that is critical, self-sustaining, and flexible. Students will be encouraged to engage the intellectual and artistic resources available in New York City that relate to the development of their work.
ART 3103 New York City Seminar
This seminar involves readings, discussion, writing, trips to museums and galleries, artists' studios, other field trips, and presentations by leading critics and scholars who present and examine issues of contemporary art in one of the world-class art centers. The seminar is developed to conceptually connect to the studio and art/architecture history course in which students are enrolled.
ART 3805 interdisciplinary perspectives on metropolitan studies
This class introduces students to the key concepts in art and urbanism in the 19th-21st centuries, ranging from politics to social changes, technology to representation, as major factors and issues that have been influencing in the past and still continue to shape a contemporary metropolis. Focusing on representation of the city in different media and multi-disciplinary approach to urban theory, with New York City as a case study, the class will be structured around several field trips, weekly lectures followed by film excerpt screenings, individual student presentations, and discussions of the assigned readings.
Art 3903 NYC Professional Practice
This class will investigate the existing formats, guidelines, and limitations that artists negotiate within the context of art practice. This will be accomplished through image presentations, selected readings, discussions, field trips, and visiting lecturers. The guest visitors may include a selection of artist(s), gallery director, non-profit director or curator, museum curator, art critic, art lawyer, art fabricator, grant spokesperson, and others. Throughout the class, students will be engaging in various forms of statement writing as well as presentations on their work. Student's work may be discussed as it is relative to the presentations and writing assignments.
Students also have the option of undertaking an approved internship.
Students in their fourth semester in Cornell AAP's professional Master of Architecture program study at the center where they enroll in a variety of classes that draw from the extraordinary architectural resources of New York City. The program is available only during the spring semester.
ARCH 5114 Core Design Studios IV: Integrative Design Practices
This class focuses on the development of architectural ideas in constructed, material form. The studio explores emergent topics and constructive methods in contemporary architectural practice. Design study includes the creation of a comprehensive set of representations that describe an architectural project in detail. Students work in collaborative groups and in consultation with advisors drawn from professional practice to develop a project that engages a complex range of topical areas, including structural and environmental systems, building envelope systems, materiality and construction, life-safety planning, and sustainability.
ARch 5201 Professional practice
Examination of organizational and management theories and practices for delivering professional design services is the focus of this class. Included is a historic overview of the profession and a review of the architect's responsibilities from the pre-contract phase through cost estimating and specifications to construction. Application of computer technology in preparing specifications is also covered.
ARCH 5615 building technology II: structural elements
Concepts and procedures for design, manufacturing, and construction in steel, concrete, masonry, timber, and new materials supplemented by examples and case studies. Taught concurrently with the integrative design studio, this class will also include field trips to construction sites, recently completed buildings, and/or fabrication shops/labs, in order to understand and design the integration of elements in both contemporary and emerging construction and fabrication.
ARCH 5616 Environmental Systems II: Building Dynamics
This class examines the design and analysis of the building envelope, with a focus on the material and energetic transformations taking place at the boundary between architecture and environment. Topics include comfort, building thermodynamics, envelope assemblies, thermal modeling, active and passive control systems, daylighting, and architectural acoustics.
These four required classes are complemented by electives for a total of 18 credits.
The semester at AAP NYC offers master of regional planning (M.R.P.) and master of landscape architecture (M.L.A.) students the opportunity to explore planning issues in the dynamic urban context of New York City, and to apply their learning and ideas to specific projects and sites. Academically, the semester is composed of an urban design studio, an urban planning workshop, a professional colloquium, and an elective. The AAP NYC planning program is offered in the fall, for students in their second year of graduate study.
Students may opt for a two-day per week internship from a wide range of options available in New York City.
CRP 5172 NYC Workshop: Land Use, Environmental Planning, and Design
This workshop examines the evolving structure of New York City and the way large-scale developments have influenced its form, patterns of growth, opportunities for economic development, value creation, and investment. The course work and related tours examine the historical forces that have influenced New York City, including models of urban analysis, contemporary theories of urban design, environmental impact analysis, and implementation strategies used in redevelopment projects. Other American and international cities will be used as comparisons.
CRP 5173 Integrated Urbanism as a Platform for Engagement
This studio will dive deep into the complex balance between architecture and urbanism, policy and public housing, focusing in particular on the campus of the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) property.
CRP 5174 NYC Colloquium: Professional Practice
This class examines the critical work of selected Cornell alumni from the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning, specifically from the Department of City and Regional Planning and also from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. The class explores the career trajectory development of alumni, and in some cases, their transitions into other professions as attorneys, educators, advocates, real estate developers, or organizational consultants.
In addition to these three required classes, M.R.P. students are expected to enroll in the appropriate exit project research class (CRP 8901, 8903, or 8905) with their advisor. The optional internship may serve as the foundation for the exit project.
M.S. AAD Summer Semester
New York City is an urban laboratory for the first semester of Cornell's advanced design research program, the post-professional master of science in advanced architectural design (M.S. AAD). The program makes full use of the city's intellectual and creative resources, as well as its dilemmas and challenges, to introduce students to terms, techniques, and problems of contemporary design inquiry. The intensive eight-week curriculum comprises a design studio and parallel theory seminar, and an advanced digital media class. The studio and seminar are structured to offer an overview of the program's four territories of investigation (TI):
- A+D: Architecture and Discourse
- A+E: Architecture and Ecology
- A+R: Architecture and Representation
- A+U: Architecture and Urbanism
Upon completion of a New York City semester at the center, students commit to one TI to define an individual trajectory of study for the subsequent two semesters on the Ithaca campus.
The M.S. AAD semester at the center offers students the opportunity to work with distinguished designers and thinkers drawn both from New York City and from Cornell's Ithaca campus. The semester's formal classwork on and in the city is complemented by a series of weekend, on-site studies of New York City's fabrics, landmarks, and ecologies.
Arch 7111 Design A
Exploration of themes, methods, and technologies in contemporary design.
ARCh 6110 Graduate Design Seminar
ARCH 6301 Design Research
Introduction to themes of inquiry in contemporary architecture, including critical motives in research, topical "problems," and materials and tactics of investigation.