Off-Third: NYU removes elevator buttons in bid to boost student fitness

After months of complaints by higher-floor residents and an uptick in student laziness, residence hall elevators will no longer stop on lower-level floors.


Samson Tu

Looking to boost your fitness? Don’t fear, NYU’s removal of lower-floor elevators will certainly get you those abs you’ve been wanting for years. (Illustration by Samson Tu)

Naisha Roy, Staff Writer

NYU recently announced that residence hall elevators would no longer have buttons for the second through fifth floors, the latest in a series of actions aimed at improving student fitness levels and hopefully no longer being a mockery in the college sports scene

Although the news came as a disappointment to students living on the lower floors, upper-level students were seen rejoicing in the Rubin Hall lounge following the announcement.

“I finally know what it’s like to be God’s favorite,” one 16th-floor resident said. “Every time I see someone take the elevator from the third floor to the first floor, part of me dies inside.”

A statement released by the NYU Residential Life and Housing Services explained the rationale behind the decision, stating that “laziness was the second largest pandemic of the year.” The university said that the elevators stopping at these unnecessary floors was the leading cause of classroom tardiness among first-years. However, they declined to comment on the time lost by the implementation of inane policies, such as Violet Go.

When confronted by protests from lower-floor residents, NYU responded with an adaptation of a controversial statement by popular American socialite Kim Kardashian. “Get your f–king a– up and climb,” the release read. “It seems like nobody wants to walk these days.”

While the university maintains that the decision benefits students the most, local conspiracy theorists believe the true motivation of the action may be to save on energy bills. In 2020, an in-depth scientific investigation on the always-stalled Kimmel escalator concluded that the university wasn’t above sacrificing student comfort for a quick buck. The proponents of the Elevator Theory argue that this is just the next step in a series of actions that will eventually result in students having to provide their own electricity with hand-built solar panels.

The loudest activists of the Elevator Theory are lower-floor residents. “I’m not paying 80k a year to climb the stairs like a peasant,” a second-floor resident argued. “It’s my constitutional right to take the elevator for a two-floor trip. If you don’t like it, transfer.”

The proposal has caused a rift in residence halls, with lounge areas being split between those for and against the button removal. As a result, those in the uncanny valley of the sixth and seventh floors are being pressured to pick a side.

The pro-removal side includes residents of the eighth and higher floors. The branch’s leader told WSN that he “once had the elevator stop at every goddamn floor on the way down.” He described the feeling of watching someone get in on the third floor as “heart-wrenching and bone-crushing,” especially when he was already “three minutes late to [his] mandatory-attendance-no-tardies-allowed five-person Ethics of Veganism recitation.”

The anti-removal side includes the proponents of Elevator Theory and others on lower-level floors. Their leader urged students to barricade and overfill elevators as a way of revenge, stating that “George Washington didn’t fight for independence so I’d have to take the stairs.” While opponents called this a logical fallacy, the argument spread like wildfire through the faction, with #WashingtonAgainstWalking trending on Twitter within minutes.

While there’s no telling whether the protests will deter the university’s decision, WSN has one piece of advice for lower-level residents — start using those Palladium StairMasters.

WSN’s Opinion section strives to publish ideas worth discussing. The views presented in the Opinion section are solely the views of the writer.

Contact Naisha Roy at [email protected].