New House to be assessed before decision is made about its future

MIT will assess corroded pipes and problems with heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system in New House before making a decision about whether to renovate or demolish the dorm.

Right now, MIT is conducting a cost analysis of both options, and expects to have more information about next steps early this fall. The Building Committee will consider the results of these analyses as it makes recommendation to the Executive Committee of the Corporation.

“Once a final decision is made about New House and a larger vision for West Campus is complete, we will inform the community,” Chancellor Barnhart PhD ’88 said in an email to The Tech.

On May 8, Chancellor Barnhart, Director of Special Projects (in the Chancellor’s Office) Jag Patel, Executive Director for Administration Peter Cummings, and Head of House Wesley Harris met with New House residents to address questions about the future of the dorm. They stressed that it is “premature at this time to predict the long-term disposition of New House, potential timelines for renovation or replacement, the effect of closing New House on other residences, or the design of a possible replacement residence hall.”

Chancellor Barnhart emphasized that students will be involved in the design process for the residence hall and its programming as well as any relocations that may be needed during construction.

“We are committed to working with students throughout the entire campus renewal process,” Barnhart said.

Plans for New House’s future will not affect the timeline for a new dorm projected to open on West Campus in 2019, Matthew Bauer, Director of Communications in the Division of Student Life, said in an email to The Tech.

Bauer advised current residents not to let concerns about future construction on New House discourage them from recruiting freshmen. He urged them to continue advertising their “extraordinary community” and said that DSL “will offer support for these outreach efforts.”