The new Manhattanville campus, aka PrezBo’s baby, is swallowing up more and more of our beautiful city. The newest casualty: the McDonald’s at 125th street. 

This morning, the Columbia community was informed via cursory email that THE MCDONALD’S AT 125TH AND BROADWAY IS CLOSING BECAUSE OF MANHATTANVILLE. The email – which also included nice developments like improved campus disability access and new gender-neutral bathrooms  – stated that the closure was because “Columbia has begun design for development of properties east of Prentis Hall on the south side of 125th Street.”

It is HARD to get a soft paper bag of McDonald’s limp fries or a half-mixed Oreo McFlurry around campus. The only other location within walking distance of Butler is at 104th street aka a hike.

I personally was a frequent client of the 125th location. It was the PERFECT place for film students to stop for a milkshake on the way to Lenfest, or to grab a burger after hitting the studio at Prentis. It was a home away from home! Change is scary and McDonald’s are the same everywhere. Columbia may be the home of Canada Gooses but McDonald’s is basically for the proletariat.

Below, some bittersweet memories of the McDonald’s, may she rest in peace.

  • “i tried to go this summer to get an ice cream cone and i waited for thirty minutes and no one took my order despite there being no line. that mcdonald’s is the schermerhorn extension of mcdonald’ses”
  • From a Bwog staffer’s alumna mother:

  • “couple days ago I went and wanted a chocolate milkshake and for some reason they could only give me vanilla”
  • “I went there once late at night w someone and the drive thru was open but not the walk in sit down part, so we tried walking up to the drive thru window and the lady just looked at us thru the window and said ‘no’ even tho we clearly had money and they were open”

A serious note: the encroachment of Columbia University, the largest landowner in New York City, into Harlem has had serious impacts on the area’s residents. Another term for “future development”? Gentrification.

Gather ye vanilla cones and Big Macs while ye may: the golden arches close officially on September 9th.

Golden arches via Wikimedia Commons.