Traffic cones and tractor at construction site

Nassau Hall with a construction fence at the southwest corner.

Princeton's iconic Nassau Hall is getting a lift

Nassau Hall is undergoing renovations that will improve lighting and accessibility throughout the iconic building, including installation of an elevator.

The historic building has served as the center of administration and more since it was built in 1756 when what was then called the College of New Jersey moved to Princeton from Newark. The move preceded the invention of the electric elevator by more than a century.

To provide access to the elevator, workers cut a new entry into the stone exterior on the building's west side.

The current entry to the building on the west side will remain, as will the spiral stone stairs that Princetonians have used for decades to climb to the second and third floors and to descend to the basement. The elevator will enable access to each of the three stories and the basement.

New door handles, designed with accessibility in mind, will be installed throughout the building. New energy-efficient lights will be installed as well. The lighting improvements are expected to be completed in January, with the door handle upgrades and the elevator installation finishing in August.

Map showing major construction projects underway on the Princeton University campus
Capital construction projects on campus include two new residential colleges, a soccer stadium, parking garage and the TIGER facility for geo-exchange utilities.

Construction continues through winter for two new residential colleges

Construction begun in the fall continues through the winter for two new residential colleges. Perelman College, which will be the University's seventh residential college, and an eighth, yet-to-be-named college are being built south of Poe Field, east of Elm Drive and near Butler, First and Whitman colleges.

The construction of Perelman College will advance one of Princeton’s highest strategic priorities — expanding the undergraduate population by about 10 percent. That eighth residential college is being built next to Perelman College and will share some of its important features, such as dining areas and some common spaces. The extra capacity provided by the eighth college will allow the renovation of existing dormitories.

The University’s strategic framework, which the Board of Trustees adopted in 2016, called for the expansion of the undergraduate student body by 125 students per class. This growth will allow Princeton to admit more talented students who will realize the benefits of a Princeton education, enhance the diversity and vitality of the campus community, and contribute to society after their graduations.

The University chose the architecture firm Deborah Berke Partners to design the colleges. The project is led by firm partners Deborah Berke, who also is dean of the Yale School of Architecture, and Maitland Jones, who received his undergraduate degree from Princeton in 1987.

Longer term, the University plans to begin work in 2023 on Hobson College, named for 1991 alumna Mellody Hobson. She and the Hobson/Lucas Family Foundation have made the lead gift to establish the first residential college at Princeton named for a Black woman. It will be built on the site of First College, formerly known as Wilson College.



Construction on one of the buildings in Perelman College, south of Poe Field.

One of the buildings in the new Perelman College takes shape just south of Poe Field, near Elm Drive, on the Princeton University campus. Pereleman College and a neighboring, yet-to-be-named residential college will enable to University to boost enrollment, offering a Princeton education to 10 percent more undergraduate students.

Close-up of rebar at construction site

Student walking along College Road on the Princeton campus.

A pedestrian walks along College Road in one of the new advisory bicycle and pedestrian lanes.

New pedestrian and bike lanes open on campus

New “advisory lanes” have been installed to create space for bicyclists and pedestrians to ride and walk along College Road and Lawrence Drive on the Princeton University campus.

Painted stripes mark sections on the edges of each street, narrowing the roadway for vehicles. Signs are posted advising motorists of the new lane configurations and of the need to yield to cyclists, pedestrians and oncoming vehicles.

The lanes on College Road extend from Alexander Road to the Graduate College, and to the west campus gate on Springdale Road. The lanes on Lawrence Drive extend from the Lawrence Apartments to Alexander Road.

The advisory lanes are a pilot project as the University seeks ways to encourage biking and walking on campus, a priority goal of the campus mobility plan and a component of the broader University sustainability initiative to reduce campus fossil fuel consumption.


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