Housing Review: Plimpton

maxresdefaultAt 15 stories, Plimpton is one of the tallest buildings in Morningside and the views from the top floors are often absolutely beautiful. You’ll also have some Columbia students in the building, both male and female.Single rooms are among the bigger rooms on campus, however the formerly lusted-after corner singles are now doubles on all floors. While an acceptable size, it’s still not a ton of space.



There is one bathroom per suite that you have to clean yourselves. They’re nice enough, but make sure you own a plunger; Plimpton’s plumbing is older than you. Also play nice with the shower doors, they can get stuck or fall out of their tracks.


You get a full kitchen with a gas stove/oven, sink, full size fridge and lots of cabinets. However smoke alarms can be super sensitive and go off every time you cook. If that happens to you, the unit pops off the wall and you can stick it in a drawer until you’re done with dinner.


  • Having a grocery store (Appletree) just steps from your front door can be a lifesaver for midnight snack cravings.
  • Being on Amsterdam puts you closer to a whole new set of things (Kitchenette! The SIPA library!) as well as Joe’s Coffee.
  • There is a computer lab and two printers on the main floor.
  • When the weather is nice, there is the patio with tables and chairs off the TV lounge, and a porch type structure off the study lounge.
  • For musicians, there is a piano in the study lounge
  • The building’s super (Eugene) is friendly and responsive, residents often bring concerns to him directly, skipping the whole work order process (work orders are also addressed relatively quickly). The desk attendants are also some of the nicest on campus.
  • Air conditioning!


  • Noise travels like crazy in Plimpton, both within suites and between floors.
  • It is a walk to campus (few blocks to Amsterdam and 120th).
  • Within a suite, there isn’t really much common space (aside from the 7th and 8th floors). The only common spaces in the building notable size are the piano lounge and the TV lounge.
  • It is not a very accessible building. Anyone or anything that can’t get up stairs to the main lobby has to come into the building through the basement.
  • In all the suites, there’s only one toilet and one shower for six people. As previously mentioned, the plumbing is prone to clogging so make sure you have the public safety number in your cell phone (call them for the on-duty mechanic, who will come 24/7 to fix your toilet).
  • While the layout of every suite is virtually identical, the building is not new so there’s plenty of cracked paint and worn furniture.
  • You control the heat (or AC depending on the time of year) in your bedroom but its only controls are high, low, or off. Particularly with the heat, it can be hard to maintain the ideal room temperature.


  • Seniors, go for the 7th and 8th floors, which are reserved for you. They were recently renovated, and have an island with bar chairs to replace the annoying wall that separates the kitchen from the rest of the suite on the rest of the floors
  • If you live in a D suite you’ll be sandwiched between two RAs (who live on every odd floor), who will hear any party you attempt to throw.
  • You have swipe access to Milbank’s door on 120th, which can be a lifesaver in bad weather.
  • While true in any suite situation, having a suite conversation about guests and noise are essential in Plimpton. The walls between rooms in a suite are like paper so noise of pretty much any sort travels.
  • Note: Some Plimpton suites on floors 9 through 13 are split into two “groups” (one group as four singles, one group as a double)

Check out our housing reviews from last year here


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