In 1891 Henry Mitchell MacCracken, the Chancellor of New York University, proposed the removal of its undergraduate college from crowded Washington Square to the rural Bronx. Construction of neo-Renaissance buildings by architect Stanford White began in 1894 on the site of the Mali estate, on a portion of the Fordham ridge above the Harlem River which was re-christened University Heights. The NYU campus expanded in the twentieth century, as architectural styles changed from the classicism of the Hall of Fame (1901) to the brutal concrete of buildings by Marcel Breuer in the 1960s. Meanwhile, the area along University Avenue became heavily residential, with elegant apartment houses rising north and south of Fordham Road. After a turbulent period in the 70s and 80s, when residents left for the suburbs and housing was abandoned, a recovered University Heights is today anchored by Bronx Community College, occupying the campus sold by NYU in 1973.
[Back to Index]