Trying to figure out where to live next year? Does your lottery number got you feeling down? If so, we have the perfect series for you. Enjoy one of many updated housing reviews with our review of Harmony.
Location: 544 W. 110th Street. Most remote of all the CC/SEAS dorms
Nearby dorms: No.
Stores and restaurants: Westside! 1020! Also, Chipotle, Five Guys, Absolute Bagels. Basically all the good stuff of lower Broadway and Amsterdam.
$9,108 year (same as 600 West 113th Street and Hartley and Wallach for non-freshmen)
Bathrooms: Communal bathrooms; one men’s and one woman’s on each floor (these are sometimes made gender neutral bathrooms).
AC/Heating: No AC during the school year. Heating swelters up your room in the frosty months
Kitchen/Lounge: Small kitchen/lounge on each floor. Electic heaters, microwave, oven, and – here’s the real wild card – communal refrigerators.
Laundry: Laundry in the basement, 4 washers and 4 dryers.
Computers/Printers: One computer and one printer on the first floor. They usually aren’t broken, but don’t depend on them to reliably print out your paper.
Gym: A small, hard to find gym on the second floor.
Intra-transportation: One normal elevator.
Hardwood/Carpet: Hardwood in the rooms and hallways; tiles in the kitchens and bathrooms
Extra: Bike storage in the basement
Singles: Most of the rooms in Harmony, ranging from 79 sq. ft. (!) to 171 sq. ft. (!!!)
Doubles: A few doubles on the lower floors, 184-262 sq. ft.
Singles: Available to almost any junior and a good deal of sophomores. Cut-offs for singles is usually around ~10/2200
Doubles: Harder to snag than the singles. Cut-off for the few doubles can vary a lot: last year it was 10/2832, but the year before that it 10/1773.
Harmony is a cramped, old, remote, expensive, awkward dormitory. Your room will likely be too small. There really isn’t a lounge; there’s a kitchen with a table and an inoperable TV. The bathrooms are old and small. There isn’t much opportunity to make friends with anyone who lives around you, as you’ll all be hunched up trying to get the limited communal resources. The doors to the kitchens are weirdly big and heavy. If you ever been to the underground bunkers of London that top military staff were to hide if the city was too bombed-out to live in, you will have gotten a sense of living in Harmony hall. But hey, Westside’s right around the corner!
You may have heard of an old-fashioned Bwog commenter named Harmony Hunter. Why can this account never find Harmony? Because most undergrads who aren’t unlucky will never set their foot into Harmony. They don’t know where it is, and they couldn’t imagine trekking down to 110th on a regular basis.
You get the used to the walk between Harmony and your classes.
“I don’t mind the distance at all. A lot of people do, but I don’t because I think a nice, 5-6 block walk in the morning is a good way to clear your head and get started for the day.”
“I find living on Harmony much more peaceful than living on campus.”
“Harmony Hall is a hidden gem. It represents such a different lifestyle at Columbia that is often overlooked. While many feel it is too far away, honestly it’s only 4 blocks from campus, and that 4 blocks brings with it such close proximity to Westside, Chipotle, 1020, and many other bars as well. I also enjoy the fact that each floor only has 10 residents on it, it’s so easy to make real friends that are such good and interested people. We are at the same time both independent souls who also enjoy coming together, which provides a great balance for a living environment. Also, we have our own subway station stop and believe me, it makes all the difference after a tiring day downtown!”
“Harmony is underrated and a peaceful, friendly dorm with averagely good facilities. Some of the rooms are really big and it’s close to the best places (Westside, Absolute, Plowshares). The off campus vibe is great!”
“Those who live in Harmony know what others do not: that quality of life is inversely correlated with proximity to campus. Get as far from Butler and Ferris as you possibly can. Westside and Absolute Bagels are your dining hall now. Burn off the bagels by walking five blocks to class twice a day until you don’t even feel it. Never see your RA. Live alone. Live with your boyfriend in your single room. Start a punk band, because that’s what these thick walls were built for. Be woken by the sound of children laughing in the morning, and not by whatever is being pumped from Low steps through speakers and megaphones. Learn that hot means cold and cold means hot: you’re not in Kansas anymore. And keep your peanut butter in your room, this is a lawless place.”
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