The two-story Marie-Josée and Henry R. Kravis Research Building will be the centerpiece of the university's new Stavros Niarchos Foundation–David Rockefeller River Campus spanning three city blocks along the shoreline of the East River. Designed to provide lab space for Rockefeller's scientific and educational programs, the building will feature an open plan that provides a significant degree of flexibility to accommodate the changing needs of research and researchers over time.
Rockefeller president Marc Tessier-Lavigne described the building to the Wall Street Journal as a tower on its side, with one long corridor connecting dozens of labs. The idea is to increase communication between scientists and foster "both deliberate and random interactions." "Just a chance encounter and the sparks fly,” said Tessier-Lavigne. "It's from those kinds of interactions between scientists of different backgrounds and different expertise that new ideas emerge."
"The Rockefeller University is unique in that it attracts the best scientists from around the world and gives them the freedom and support to tackle the biggest questions in science," said Henry R. Kravis, who serves as a vice chair of the university's board. "Another hallmark of the university is its interdisciplinary and collaborative culture. These new laboratories have been designed to enable scientists to work seamlessly with colleagues both within and beyond their fields."