Even as it falls, Harrelson Hall gets the thumbs down

Even as it falls, Harrelson Hall gets the thumbs down

It has been over half a century since Harrelson Hall first graced the face of N.C. State’s campus with its round, pimple-like structure. And just like a pimple, it’s being popped and scraped away as if picture day was right around the corner. This is a long time coming for a lot of N.C. State

Harrelson Hall Demolition

Photo by Charles Morse.

It has been over half a century since Harrelson Hall first graced the face of N.C. State’s campus with its round, pimple-like structure. And just like a pimple, it’s being popped and scraped away as if picture day was right around the corner.

This is a long time coming for a lot of N.C. State students, as I have often heard the horror stories associated with this building on a regular basis. The cramped classrooms, awkwardly shaped bathrooms and lack of windows are enough to put anyone off. Then there is the constant walking in a circle to get from class to class. It’s as if the architectural plans for a school building and a prison were swapped by mistake, and we ended up with the prison.

Despite the criticism, there are still some who will miss Harrelson Hall. N.C. State alumni have voiced their opinion on Harrelson being a piece of N.C. State’s history. For a current generation, it brings back the awful memories of a weirdly shaped building with a bland interior and claustrophobic rooms. But for generations of N.C. State students past, it brings back feelings of nostalgia. These feelings could be deceptive. Remember when you re-watched “Home Alone 2 as an adult? Not as great as you thought it was when you were young, right? When Harrelson Hall first opened in 1962, it was praised as being appealing and highly functional. But so were bell bottom jeans and saddle shoes.

Even as someone who does not have a nostalgic tie to this building, I do have to say I will miss it in a way. I have walked past it almost every day during my three years at State, so it will be a little weird not to see its disc-like figure when I go to the library, or Hillsborough Street, or the Atrium. A part of me will be sad to see it go … though that may be because I’m a hoarder and have issues letting go of old things I don’t need.

Most of Harrelson Hall will be put to good use and recycled into new products, while most of its furniture will be sent to other schools (making it their problem).

So even as it is torn down, Harrelson Hall is given the thumbs down. But that’s a much better alternative to the other finger many students would give it.

 

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Marcus Blyden
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5 Comments

  • elaineworthey
    June 16, 2016, 1:36 pm

    As a former Raleigh resident, we join you in your joy and sorrow ;/

    REPLY
  • Dawn
    June 18, 2016, 1:28 am

    Very good article

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  • Rebecca Rothney
    June 18, 2016, 6:21 pm

    This article made me laugh- well written with excellent images – great use of the English language!

    REPLY
  • […] more than half a century of being nicknamed as the N.C. State “flying saucer,” Harrelson Hall is now a pile of rubble, providing opportunity to renovate the space. The university’s only cylindrical building was […]

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  • […] here about why we’re not all that sad to say goodbye to Harrelson. And read more here about how […]

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