51 Astor Place
The building at 51Astor Place nearing completion in 1960.
  51 astor

During the 1950-51 academic year, the New York State Education Department rejected the Department of Architecture’s proposal for a degree-granting program primarily due to inadequate space and facilities. In the following years, the institution struggled to overcome its physical shortcomings. In 1955, the Bible House, just north of the Foundation Building on Astor Place, was secured by The Cooper Union. Working with Harrison and Abramovitz architects, Architecture Professor Esmond Shaw developed an initial design for a new engineering building on that site. Four years later, with Esmond Shaw now Head of the Department of Architecture, The Cooper Union celebrated its 100th Anniversary with a cornerstone ceremony held for the new building at 51 Astor Place. It was designed by Voorhees, Walker, Smith, Smith & Haines Architects.