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The Hanlon Housing Projects

The Hanlon administration’s plan to put dorms with 750 beds on the College Park site is hard to fathom. One way to think about the massive project is that the dorms would be well over twice as big as the East Wheelock Cluster, which currently has space for 336 beds (Andres Hall: 84; McCulloch Hall: 78; Morton Hall: 84; Zimmerman Hall: 86).

Imagine a complex like this on the campus-side slope of College Park:

East Wheelock Cluster Twice.jpg

That’s a lot of building to shoehorn into a little, green space:

College Park Concept.jpg

And given Phil’s fundraising woes, you have to expect that the dorms will be barebones; no prizes for architectural elegance will be given out.

Phil Hanlon is well on his way to ruining the College.

Addendum: Scott Meacham ‘95 opines on his Dartmo.com blog (an excellent publication devoted to the College’s architecture) that the Shattuck Observatory will probably face the wrecking ball in the construction of the huge new dorms (Photo by Josh Renaud ‘17):

Shattuck Observatory.jpg

Some background on Shattuck:

Built in 1854, Shattuck Observatory sits on a hill behind the Wilder physics building and is the oldest scientific building on campus. Most often, the astronomical observing sessions use an 8-inch reflector telescope in a small building near the observatory. On occasion, however, the sessions are held inside Shattuck Observatory, which houses a 134-year-old, 9.5-inch refractor telescope.

The Physics and Astronomy department still offers public astronomical viewings using the two telescopes at Shattuck.

Addendum: An alumnus writes in:

I have begun to find reading Dartblog depressing. It seems like the administration can’t make yet another mistake… and then it does. I feel like we are nearing the climax of some long drama that will either end in “Dartmouth University” or Phil Hanlon being fired. Over the past few years I have gone from disdained to openly ashamed of the mismanagement at the school, which is sad because there are still faculty doing great work there. In the past month you have a had a couple uplifting stories. I feel like readers need a glimmer of hope — do you have any left?

Let’s see if the freshman show some spirit at Homecoming this evening.

Addendum: A student writes in to point out a section of an editorial in the The D dated September 29:

Shattuck is one of several Dartmouth buildings designed by Ammi B. Young, a master of Greek revival and neo-Renaissance architecture who also designed Vermont’s famous State House and who served as the first Supervising Architect of the U.S. Treasury. Shattuck was Young’s last standalone building and remains one of his most famous. Any attempt to modify it should be contested by Dartmouth’s community, and we hope the astronomy faculty will stand up for its most famous asset.

Ammi B. Young, who was born in Lebanon, New Hampshire in 1798, received an honorary degree from the College in 1841.

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