What’s up with the Danawell hallways?

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

“Is it true that Danawell hallways are twisty so they’re riotproof, or is that a total myth?”

The short answer: myth.
Though an exceedingly popular myth, the winding corridors of sister dorms Dana and Hallowell were not designed with riots in mind, although the buildings were constructed during the tumultuous ’60s.

According to the findings of David Michael Bing ’03, who researched the history of various buildings of Swarthmore via Phoenix archives and other sources and compiled his findings on his website, the builders’ idea was to reduce noise.  They implemented that plan by laying twelve-inch-thick walls filled with sand and making hallways with no one section longer than twelve feet, all in hope that noise would not travel as much as it did in their straighter counterparts.

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