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Housing Reviews 2016: Watt



You might be surprised to know Watt exists–that’s what makes it so special! Our housing review series continues with a look at this less-mainstream option.

Location: 549 W. 113th Street (between Amsterdam and Broadway)

Nearby Dorms: Across the street form Symposium and McBain

Restaurants and Stores: You’re in the heart of Columbia University so reap in the benefits of all your faves (Milano, Dig Inn, Community, International, and Sweetgreen to name a few).  You can practically deplete your financial resources from your bed.

Cost: $10,120/year


  • Bathrooms: Private bathroom per apartment
  • AC/Heating: None (sad face) but there are large windows to let in a nice breeze if it’s out there.
  • Kitchen: Private per apartment – with a fridge, stove, and sink (YAAAS)
  • Lounge: None; which facilitate the fact that people don’t really know each other on their floors, which is either a blessing or a curse.
  • Laundry: One washer and dryer on each floor
  • Computer/Printer: One printer in the lobby
  • Gym: None, but McBain’s is very close and apparently spiffy.
  • Intra-transportation: One slow elevator for all six floors.
  • Hardwood/Carpet: Hardwood (one point for aesthetic Watt.)
  • Bonus: Apparently everyone in Watt gets a comfy desk chair. So that’s…pretty boring af cool!

Room Variety: 

  • Studio Singles: Two on each floor, 171 sq. ft. and 185 sq. ft. (32 total)
  • Studio Doubles: Common; nine on each floor. They vary from 200 sq. ft. to nearly 250 sq. ft. (66 total)
  • 1-bedroom doubles: A bedroom plus a living area gives you lots of space—a total floor area of 365 sq. ft. Usually, one person gets the inside room and another sleeps outside, making two rooms. There are only two of these per floor.
  • 2-bedroom doubles: Like the 1-bedroom double, but each person gets their own room plus a common area for a total of 458 or 480 sq. ft. Two per floor, so keep your fingers crossed.


  • Studio doubles go to mostly Juniors and are pretty easy to get if your number is sub 3000
  • Studio singles go to really lucky Seniors. The numbers on this one are depressing — you’ll probably need a number under (or very close to) 200 to even consider it
  • 1-bedrooms go to the luckiest Juniors on Earth (think numbers under 50)
  • 2-bedrooms go to lucky Seniors with numbers around 500

Bwog Recommendations: 

  • Watt is a hot commodity on campus, and for good reason: it has a prime location, gives students a really independent/adult living situation, and is a favorite for offering comfortable spaces.
  • Rising sophomores really shouldn’t even think about it
  • Rising juniors looking for a double should definitely try for Watt
  • Rising seniors should try for the singles or the 2-bedroom set up because they’re glorious.

Resident Opinions:

  • “I love having a kitchen and a bathroom for just me and my roommate. It feels like our own little apartment. Super convenient location.”
  • “My room faces 113th and is right across from the frat houses so it gets really loud on the weekend (and the rooms on the other side face the back of the 114th frat houses which can also get loud)”
  • “Overall a great option for rising juniors who don’t mind living with one roommate but are ready to be done with sharing a kitchen and bathrooms with 40+ hallmates”

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