City University of New York, CUNY

Dominican Studies Institute and Archives
NAC Building, 1421 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY

The Institute is a library and Archives for the study of the history of the Dominican Community in America. Located in the NAC building in City College, it is a part of the CUNY system in New York City. The goal of the project was to provide a create an image for the Dominican identity as well as appropriate Library and Archival spaces.

Occupying about 10,000 sf, adjacent to the main library, the Institute has an independent entrance. The space consists of Offices, Archives, Support areas and a Multipurpose Reading Room, which is used as a library space and also for seminars, meetings and other community events.

The Multipurpose Room, being the major public space, was created as a special space, with high ceilings, extensive wood paneling and millwork and special finishes. The lighting was designed to highlight the exhibits on the wall, as well create an illusion of exterior windows along the demising wall, since this is an interior space with no natural light.

The Archival space required special Mechanical systems to maintain appropriate levels of humidity. A independent HVAC system had to be designed to accommodate this requirement.

This project has been heralded as an exemplary project by CUNY.


Completion: December 2010
Project Cost: $3 M
Role of Firm: Prime Consultants, Architects.
Client: City University of New York.