Rubin Hall – notorious for its incongruous characteristics: the sense of community and indiscernible smell, historic charm and unappetizing dining hall — was renovated this summer, to the delight of current and previous residents. The renovation was prompted by the University’s initiative to install fire sprinklers in all residence halls. Along with this practical improvement, Rubin also received new paint, floors, and minor bathroom repair and restoration.
Beth Morningstar, Director of Strategic Assessment and Communications in the Office of the Executive Vice President, explained, “Although we are not required by law to install sprinklers throughout the whole residential building, we do think that it is the prudent thing to do. When the Division of Operations decided five years ago to install sprinklers in our residence halls, we put a plan in place to do one or two each summer. You must shut the building down to do sprinkler work, so it was decided to do some cosmetic improvements to Rubin Hall at the same time.”
Heidi White, the Faculty Fellow-in-Residence at Rubin Hall who was moved to Gramercy Green during the renovations said, “spending my summer in a new residence hall and exploring a new neighborhood of Manhattan was a great experience. But, of course, it’s always good to be home, especially when your home is Rubin Hall.”
White continued, “Rubin Hall has a lot of history, warmth, and charm. The renovations only accentuated her wonderful character. Although the renovations were extensive, the original integrity of the building was preserved throughout.”
Though the historic lobby of Rubin was not renovated, White believes it also took on a new post-renovation glow. “Rubin’s lobby is just now more stunning with her shiny brass revolving entry door, dark wood paneling, romantic sconces, and black and white checkerboard marble floors. Even the brass panels and the wainscoting in the elevators have a new sheen. Everyone I have talked to is very pleased with the results.”
Amy Stoker, a previous resident and junior in Tisch feels the renovations have been necessary for some time. “I loved living in Rubin because of the character the building has, but the renovations are much overdue. It’s a shame that dorms like Rubin were previously overlooked and unwanted because of the lack of cleanliness and renovation while brand new dorms such as Founders were being built,” said Stoker.
The renovations did not result in any change in cost, making Rubin’s low-cost options more desirable. But, some things never change…