Friday, March 27, 2009

Real Estate: Brown Hall

An unusual taste of the Renaissance on a campus dominated by Gothic limestone turrets, the appropriately named Brown Hall is a centrally planned (and located!) brick-and-granite structure popular among both juniors and seniors because of its convenient location, big windows and sizable rooms. Located directly behind the Princeton University Art Museum (between 1903 and Dod halls) Brown is just a stone’s throw away from Frist, Dillon Gym, and many academic buildings and libraries up campus.

Constructed in 1892, Brown Hall was the gift of Mrs. David P. Brown, who also commissioned neighboring Dod Hall to commemorate her brother, Albert P. Dod, a professor of mathematics and architecture at Princeton. Brown Hall was designed by John Lyman Faxon, a Renaissance revival architect heavily influenced by the legendary New York-based architecture firm McKim, Mead and White. The most striking feature of the building’s fa├žade is the Florentine arch, which provides the building’s only access point, leading into a square courtyard.

Unusually, Brown boasts many more three-room triples than quads, so if you only have two potential roommates, this might be the building for you. Brown also offers many singles, but no doubles.

“I love living in Brown because it’s so close to everything and my room is really big with a great common room,” says Betsy Goodman ’10, who currently lives in a Brown triple, which she says is her favorite room she’s lived in during her three years at Princeton.

Lauren Clark ’10, a Brown single resident, said she agrees that Brown is conveniently placed, but she also pointed out a few of the building’s pitfalls. “The heating system makes clicking noises, and depending on where you live, you may have to walk around your entire floor to get to your bathroom. I live next door to the men’s bathroom but I have to walk around three sides of the building to get to the girls’ bathroom."

If you do decide to drawn into Brown, it might be a good idea to invest in a laundry hamper with comfortable handles, because you’ll be carrying it quite a bit: Brown has no laundry room of its own, so you’ll have to rely on machines in Dod or 1903.