Special Content

NYU Tandon Captures the Spirit of Innovation

How the new Institute of Design and Construction Innovation Hub is changing the construction landscape


The Egyptian pyramids, the water supply and roadway networks of ancient Rome, the Greek temples. Each was a magnificent engineering and construction venture and contributed to making construction a backbone of civilization.  Yet, today the construction industry isn’t perceived as one where creativity and innovative methods readily flourish. It’s critical, however, to today’s economy, the environment and society overall to capitalize on construction’s historic legacy, and to develop and test innovative ideas that will serve future generations well.

Capturing the spirit of innovation is a primary goal of the new Institute of Design and Construction (IDC) Innovation Hub—located at NYU Tandon School of Engineering and made possible through the generous support of the IDC Foundation, a legacy of the Brooklyn-based Institute of Design and Construction, the nonprofit technical college that trained more than 30,000 students until its voluntary closing in 2015. Under the leadership of Dr. Michael Horodniceanu, PE, a prominent transportation and construction executive and a professor in the school’s Department of Civil and Urban Engineering, the IDC Innovation Hub will provide a transformational framework to enable the industry to creatively build faster, in a more cost-effective manner, while maintaining a high level of safety.

Under the IDC Innovation Hub’s membership-based structure, participating organizations will benefit in many ways, including but not limited to:

Access to the research capabilities of faculty who have extensive, hands-on industry experience, supported by PhD and masters-level students at NYU Tandon School of Engineering.  As a university entity, the IDC Innovation Hub has no industry biases to overcome, and its goal is to share with its members the research outcomes to help achieve the most creative and appropriate solutions.

Advisory support on specific projects from experienced, independent experts. Members can also attend technical seminars on topics ranging from organizational and leadership issues, to best practices in selecting materials and machinery, to how best to use the vast amounts of project data currently available to secure better project outcomes.

Participation in technical training programs provided by academics and industry leaders and learn of upcoming consulting and construction opportunities through a centralized site to be developed.

The IDC Innovation Hub’s platform will bring together construction-related players such as developers; architecture, engineering, planning,  and construction service providers; law firms; local, state and federal government agencies; utilities, hospitals, airlines and manufacturers; as well as labor organizations.

With more than 40 years of academic and industry leadership, Dr. Horodniceanu is ideally qualified to oversee the IDC Innovation Hub. His public sector experience includes service as president of New York City’s MTA Capital Construction, the U.S.’s largest transportation construction program. He also was commissioner of New York City’s Bureau of Traffic and was chairman and CEO of the former Urbitran Group, a multi-disciplinary planning, design, and construction management firm.

Under the leadership of Dr. Horodniceanu, Civil and Urban Engineering Department Chair Dr. Magued Iskander and NYU Tandon Dean Jelena Kovacevic, the IDC Innovation Hub is a model of partnership between industry and research and stands poised to help usher in a new era of industry innovation and advancement.

As the IDC Innovation Hub is inaugurated, it is seeking members who also want to help transform the industry for the positive. The monetary commitment will range between $5,000 and $20,000 annually, depending on the level of benefits chosen. M/W/DBE firms are most welcome to participate.

For additional information about membership, please contact IDCInnovations@nyu.edu.