Collegetown is booming as CUNY takes over more space

Number 16’s ‘Court’-ing bids
The Brooklyn Paper / Julie Rosenberg

City University of New York is expanding its empire in Downtown with a lease on a large space at the 16 Court St. tower — further evidence that the neighborhood is becoming College Town USA.

Real estate sources confirmed this week that the university — which is based in Manhattan but already has a City Tech satellite campus on Jay Street and another in Midwood — signed a two-year lease for about half a football field-sized office space inside the borough’s tallest office tower, which is at Montague Street.

The move suggests that the university has its eyes on Downtown for its future — it already has a gigantic campus across from the Metrotech Center. And it’s further evidence that Downtown has become the next big college hub, considering its proximity to the nearby Polytechnic University, St. Francis College, and Packer Collegiate Institute among others.

Details are sketchy, but the university’s “Special Programs” offices are supposed to move into the high rise by January. The offices will occupy two floors above the storefront Duane Reade and the FedEx print shop.

CUNY and building managers wouldn’t talk officially about the transaction for now.

Colleges are taking over the neighborhood, and the future looks bright for graduates: New York University is planning to build an addition to its NYU-Poly center in Metrotech — a plan that could include a 41-story high rise on Jay Street near Myrtle Avenue, though will likely be a smattering of smaller buildings.