Renovating the Lawrence and Eris Field Building at 17 Lexington Avenue
The Field Building stands on the 1847 site of The Free Academy, the first institution of free public higher education in the United States and an important component of Baruch’s heritage. The current facility was built in 1928 to house City College’s division of business and civic administration and has been in constant use since it opened in 1929.
The building’s impressive highly ornamented façade on E. 23rd Street is engraved as The City College of New York. The 1,100-seat Mason Hall Auditorium, located on the first floor, still shows signs of its former elegance.
The building is used by thousands of students, faculty, staff, and the community. Currently, it houses administrative staff and 60 classrooms, 8 computer labs, and 19 science labs. When the six-phase renovation is complete, the state-of-the-art building will accommodate smart class rooms, up-to-date science labs, a student lounge, and faculty and staff offices.
Timeline of 17 Lex
- 1847: The Free Academy, the first municipally-supported college in New York, is built at 23rd and Lexington.
- 1929: Construction completed on City College School of Business and Civic Administration at 17 Lexington Ave.
- 1953: The school was renamed after philanthropist and financier Bernard M. Baruch.
- 2005: The building was renamed Lawrence and Eris Field Building after philanthropist Lawrence N. Field and his late wife, Eris.
- 2017: Phase 1A Renovations at 17 Lex officially begin.