What life is like in Litchfield Towers

Living in giant batteries is packed with excitement

On the corner of Fifth and Bouquet St. lies the second most prominent part of the University of Pittsburgh’s campus- Litchfield Towers, with the first being the magnificent Cathedral of Learning. The signature battery-like architecture makes it easy to spot in the Pittsburgh skyline.

After being on campus and living in towers for four weeks, I can safely say that I have never felt more at home. Towers has a strong sense of community, and it feels like I’ve been here for years. Along with different aspects like the company of my next door neighbors and the convenient lobby, the clueless freshman of the class of 2020 never have to leave the comfort of our new home.

Market To Go

During orientation week, affectionately known as “o-week”, our resident assistant asked us to keep our doors open because “open doors make happy floors”. As the week went on, more and more people from my floor poked their heads in and made small talk. After classes, my roommate and I leave our door open for our other floor mates to come socialize, relieve stress, and share a laugh.

Due to the cylindrical shape of towers, the hallway is round and makes it seem like we all live in a townhouse. In a way, it’s similar to having a large family because there is always someone around to talk to, hang out with, or ask for homework help.

The overall personality of towers is exciting, and I don’t think I can ever grow old of it. Each floor has a different theme. For example, the seventeenth floor is cartoon characters, floor fifteen is flamingos, floor five is camping. Although I don’t spend much time on the other floors, I can see the opening banner for the floor when the elevator doors open.

During o-week, my floor mates and I went on a scavenger hunt on all twenty-two floors of our building to explore the different themes. Along with a theme, each floor has a calendar with events for the month, flyers for activities around campus and posters with positive messages and encouraging phrases. The resident assistants focused on making each floor feel like home and a place where everyone feels safe and feels comfortable with being themselves.

Calendar displaying floor-specific events

Besides my unique neighbors, the best part of living in towers is the lobby. It boasts the largest dining cafeteria, a print center, laundry room, coffee cart, student study lounge and a gym facility. If there were to be a snow storm and the 1500+ residents were trapped in towers, we’d be the only ones on lower campus to survive.

Oftentimes on Sundays, the residents of towers never leave and spend the “lazy day” at home. The resident director often provides weekly events for students to attend and relieve stress in the lounges. For example, this week is the “Tower B Passport Extravaganza” where each lounge has a different event that people can hop to.

Tower B's events for this weekend

At first, I was distressed to learn my roommate and I were assigned to the smallest rooms on campus, but now, I cannot imagine residing somewhere else with anyone else. I hope the close knit community of floor seventeen will last through our time here. Meeting the people on my floor has helped to make a seamless transition from high school to college. It truly feels like home, and I hope all freshman have the chance to live in the iconic towers. We have made so many memories already, and I can’t wait to see what we’ll accomplish next.

Beautiful towers

University of Pittsburgh