Journalism Planning Study

Graduate School of Journalism

This planning study was conducted for Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism to analyze the school’s existing and future spatial needs, as well as potential options for expansion to their 72,000 sqft McKim, Mead & White building on Columbia’s Morningside campus.

During the course of the study, we conducted extensive focus group meetings with each separate department and constituency within the school. Key issues addressed included current and projected uses of the building, anticipated changes to the curriculum and subsequent teaching methodologies in the school, and questions as to the nature of digital technology in journalism education and what role architecture can play in incorporating new technologies into the school’s curriculum.


A priority for the school was to provide as much flexibility as possible into future planning, since the school’s spatial needs would depend both on securing funding from donors and on changes to the curriculum that were being developed concurrent to the planning study. The study was structured to provide a series of planning scenarios that allow the school to move forward with renovations and development in a truly flexible way. These scenarios take into account short-term and long-term needs in the school, as well as significant alternate adjacencies for major programs within the school. The Toni Stabile Student Center was the first project developed from this Planning Study.


New York, NY


Columbia University




72,000 sqft

MFA Design Team

Scott Marble, Karen Fairbanks, Eric Ng, Adam Marcus, Darren Zhou

MEP Engineer

Plus Group PLLC