Healy Pub Proposal | Pub | Harvard University



The Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA) is exploring ideas on how best to use the $3.4 million endowment built up over the past decade through the Student Activities Fee. The goal of GUSA in spending down the money is to favor projects that affect or are open to the entire student body and have a lasting impact on campus. This report lays out such a proposal: bringing back Healy Pub as a dignified and student-run gathering place in Healy basement of historical character where students can study and enjoy food, drinks and one another's company. Comparable projects at other universities have cost around $3 million. Students overwhelmingly desire to bring the center of campus life back to Healy. With the completion of the Hariri Building and Science Center, large amounts of administrative space are being freed up on campus. Never again will students will have the opportunity to decide how to spend millions of their own dollars. This is an ambitious, once-in-a-generation opportunity to unite students of all ages and revitalize a campus tradition. The creation of Healy Pub would serve several important interests: 1. A dedicated space on campus for socializing, eating, drinking and studying 2. A venue on campus for reasonably priced food and drinks 3. Providing leadership and learning experiences in the running of a campus business 4. Incorporating greater student-accessible space in our flagship campus building 5. A means by which to connect undergraduates to Georgetown traditions and the Hoya spirit The list of signatories below is comprised of Georgetown students and alumni who have expressed interest in seeing the idea and spirit of a Healy Pub further explored. While there must be careful consideration of the costs and long-term viability of a revival of the Pub, they all have agreed with the goal and nature of this revival. All have served in significant leadership roles in the Georgetown community. All fully support improvement in the availability of historic campus space dedicated to fostering the Georgetown student community. Hoya Saxa,
Matthew Stoller, C’08 GUSA Senator, 2007-08 Twister Murchison, S’08 GUSA President, 2006-07 Patrick Dowd, S’09 GUSA President, 2008-09 Jason Kluger, B’11 GUSA Vice-President, 2009-11; Co-Author, Report on Student Space Mike Meaney, S’12 GUSA President, 2011-12 Greg Laverriere, C’12 GUSA Vice-President, 2011-12 Adam Mortillaro, C’12 Speaker, GUSA Senate, 2010-11 Michael Barclay, C’12 GUSA Senator, 2010-11; GUSA Chief of Staff 2011-12 Jake Sticka, C’13 Commissioner, ANC 2E, 2011-13 Jenna Lowenstein, C’08 Commissioner, ANC 2E, 2006-08 Alex Pon, C’12 President & CEO, Students of Georgetown, Inc. (“The Corp”), 201112 Charlie Harrington, C’08 Chair, Students of Georgetown, Inc. (“The Corp”), 2007-08 Shane Giuliani, C’09 Chair, Students of Georgetown, Inc. (“The Corp”), 2008-09 Stephanie Bean, C’09 Co-Chair, Class of 2009 Alumni Committee; NSO Coordinator, 2008 2 Chris Pigott, C’12 Student Representative, Georgetown Board of Directors, 2010-11 Mo Narang, C’08 Student Representative, Georgetown Board of Directors, 2007-08 Mark Corallo, C’88 General Manager, University Center Pub Larry Everling, B’87 Senior Management, University Center Pub Jim McGrail, C’87 Senior Management, University Center Pub Ryan Berg, C’10 Co-Author, Report on Student Space Fitz Lufkin, C’11, G’13 Co-Author, Report on Student Space

The basement of Healy would be converted into Healy Pub. The layout would be part student lounge, with space to relax, socialize and study; part bar and restaurant, to eat and drink; and part performance venue. This would not be the Pub of old, with its sticky floors and thundering music. Healy Pub would be open to faculty and all students regardless of age, though only those over 21 would be allowed to drink. 1 It would be student-owned and operated, through a student organization specially-created for the purpose. 2 The décor would reflect Healy Hall’s historic heritage and could include historical items from Lauinger’s special collections. Student groups on campus could perform at the Pub, from choral evenings with the Chimes and Saxatones to comedy and standup nights with the Georgetown Improv Association to student bands, poetry slams and more. The Pub could host trivia nights, karaoke, basketball game watches and other events. Groups could hold receptions in the Pub prior to or after performances in Gaston, like Rangila or Cherry Tree Massacre. In short, Healy Pub would be the social center of campus.

Founded in 1974, the Georgetown University Center Pub, or ‘the Pub’ as it was affectionately known by generations of alumni, was located in Healy Basement (then, as now, the ‘University Center’). Student-run, it won praise year after year as the best college bar in America and was the epicenter of student life for well over a decade until it was forced to close in 1988 due in part to falling revenues necessitated by mandatory ‘dry nights’. Although the Pub was reborn in the newly-completed Leavey Center, Vice President of Student Affairs James A. Donahue closed the bar for good during the 1994-1995 academic year. Today, the basement of Healy Hall is occupied by several administrative offices, primarily the offices of Faculty and Staff Benefits and Student Financial Services. In a 2010 poll by the Georgetown Voice, readers voted the closing of Healy Pub “Georgetown’s all-time worst idea.” 3 Our vision of Healy Pub would alleviate the problems that necessitated the original Pub’s closing; it would be professionally-run and managed, through a student organization in consultation with industry professionals, as was done at Harvard through the hiring of a recent alumnus as general manager with restauranteur experience to oversee a group of student managers. Further, it would be open to all faculty and students, maximizing revenue—the Pub, after the drinking age was changed, functioned as a 21+ venue only during the evenings, with ‘dry nights’ to accommodate those under 21 (where sales plummeted). We seek an open and inviting space for all members of the Georgetown community, with beer and spirits for students acting as an accompaniment and not the centerpiece. We don’t seek to blithely remake the University Center Pub, we seek to make a sophisticated, upscale student-run eating/entertainment establishment that is a safer alternative to M and Wisconsin for drinking and a tremendous work experience for the employees.
Licensees are permitted, though not required, to enforce an age restriction for admittance. D.C. Municipal Reg. 23-905.1. Several D.C. bars, such at the 9:30 Club, Black Cat, Velvet Lounge and Blues Alley admit those over 18. A stamp or wristband could distinguish those of legal age. 2 Harvard’s Pub is managed by an alumnus of the class of 2001, salaried by the school, who has restaurant and bar management experience, but is otherwise student-owned, managed and operated. 3 Chris Heller, “Closing the Pub: Georgetown’s all-time worst idea,” VOX POPULI, Sep. 3, 2010. http://blog.georgetownvoice.com/2010/09/03/closing-the-pub-georgetowns-all-time-worst-idea/



From 2008 to 2010, students at Georgetown formed the Student Space Working Group to address the lack of adequate student space at Georgetown. They surveyed over 1,000 students on a wide variety of space issues and interviewed campus architect Alan Brangman. In 2010, they produced the Report on Student Space, a 78 page document that identified a wide-spread dissatisfaction with student space on campus. “Georgetown is not a student-centered university in terms of space allocation,” the report stated, and “does not provide adequate resources for students to attain excellence in their personal, extracurricular and academic lives. Administrators and faculty occupy the premier spaces on campus without a necessary balance and recognition of student needs. According to the study, students assess student space as mediocre, reflecting dissatisfaction that the university does not provide the resources necessary to attain excellence. Students lack the dedicated space necessary to develop to their full potential as whole persons.” 4 The report further found that “undergraduate students have been pushed to the fringes of campus as spaces in the best, historic buildings have changed their purpose from directly “Undergraduate students have  serving students.” 5 Asked what they desired to see as the center of student been pushed to the fringes of  life, students by large margins overwhelmingly chose Healy Hall, campus as spaces in the best,  though only 5% of respondents actually thought it was currently the center of student life. Moreover, students also historic buildings have  overwhelmingly desire to see student lounge and organization changed their purpose from  space in Healy, almost twice as many as want student union directly serving students.”  space in New South. 6 88% of students support the restoration of student space in Healy Hall. Report on Student Space  Of the areas students thought most in need of additional space, the top three responses were study space, social space and dining/eating areas. These top three far eclipsed the other responses of meeting space, student club space, athletic/exercise areas and studio and performing art space. The creation of Healy Pub would serve all three goals students most desire. Healy Hall today is almost entirely devoted to administrative or faculty space. Of the five floors in Healy, only the first floor houses classrooms. The remainder is dedicated to administrative or faculty offices, or departments and institutes. Riggs Library, one of the few remaining cast-iron libraries in the United States, is closed to students except during infrequent special events. Even the Philodemic Room, an area built specifically for the Philodemic Society, funded by Philodemic alumni during the creation of Healy, can be closed off for faculty or staff events if needed. There is no club or student office space in Healy. In short, Healy Hall, Georgetown’s flagship building and the desired center of campus life by students, is virtually closed off to students.

4 5

REPORT ON STUDENT LIFE 8 (2010) ID. 10 6 ID. 26


Charts from the Report on Student Space, referenced above


Currently the space in Healy basement is occupied by several administrative offices. These primarily include administrators from Human Resources (8 members, rooms G-09, G-18), Faculty and Staff Benefits (16 members, rooms G-07, G-18), Campus Ministry’s Retreat and ESCAPE programs (5 members, room G-01) and Student Financial Services, (21 members, room G-19). 7 The moving of these administrative offices, as any restructuring, will entail inconveniences and costs, but we believe the space is available and that the benefits of having a multi-use study, social and entertainment venue in historic Healy far outweigh the inconveniences. Large amounts of space are opening up on campus. In September 2009, the University completed construction of the Hariri Building, a five-story, 179,000 square foot building for the business school with space for 120 faculty offices. Furthermore, the University is in the midst of constructing a 150,000 square foot Science Center, scheduled to be completed in 2012, that will allow multiple science departments to be housed in the same building. This vast increase of office space and the coordination of formerly disparate administrators opens up previously-occupied space in which displaced administrators could be moved, in addition to any already-available space the University has. The Pub, also, need not take up the entirety of the basement, thus allowing some offices to remain. Finally, the transition, although inconvenient, would not happen overnight: Harvard’s Pub was designed and built over a threeyear period, and any similar construction would likely take at least as much time. Administrators would have ample time to plan for the new locations. In short, we believe the space is there if the University prioritizes it. GUSA and administrators should work together to Healy Basement Layout, ca. 1970 explore the feasibility of alternative locations, but with the mutual understanding that there is a strong benefit of having a fully-endowed and student-run pub, social, performance and study space and of returning the center of campus life back to Healy. The neighbors are likely to endorse this project. It brings social life back on campus, not off. And by being open to all students (unlike, e.g., the Tombs after-hours), it draws in students from the neighborhood bars and thus reduces the disturbance to neighbors—and the associated harm to students of being arrested by MPD. There is precedent for this, too: back in 2006 when the University considered banning all kegs on campus, the ANC passed unanimously passed a resolution against the proposal because of concerns would push students and parties off campus. 8 The proposal would be beneficial for student safety by providing a safe place for students to socialize in the evening. By having students drink within an open campus location, the University can safely monitor students’ drinking and ensure that they do not become dangerously intoxicated. Those showing the effects of heavy intoxication can be dealt with safely and quickly via GERMS. Issues and conduct violations will be dealt with by DPS and the administration, not MPD and the courts, ensuring that youthful mistakes do not result in permanent judicial records. By being located in Healy, away from residence halls, sound will not disturb students or neighbors. This is not by any means a silver bullet for all safety issues, but it is a substantial step forward from the current situation.
Figures were retrieved from a search of the Georgetown Directory, based on a search of the departments listed as being in Healy Hall basement on the Georgetown webpage. 8 Anna Bank, “Neighbors pass resolution opposing keg ban.” GEORGETOWN VOICE, Dec. 7, 2006. http://georgetownvoice.com/2006/12/07/neighbors-pass-resolution-opposing-keg-ban/



The recent creation by Harvard of a student-centered pub in one of its flagship historic building is an illustrative example of how a pub in Healy might be brought about. At the heart of Harvard’s campus sits Memorial Hall, dedicated in 1878 as a monument to Harvard alumni who died during the Civil War. The building’s Gothic form links back to the ideological roots of the university as Harvard itself was founded in the British academic tradition. From the time of Memorial Hall’s completion in 1876, and for more than six decades after, the lower level’s use was limited to storage and mechanical space. In the spring of 2005 Dean of the College Benedict H. Gross was eager to explore the potential of the Commons to serve as an undergraduate social space. The Dean tapped a young graduate of Harvard College, Zac Corker ’04 to spearhead the effort. From the outset, student involvement defined the planning process, as undergraduates advised everything from interior design to drafting a business plan for the pub. The meticulous planning extended to the future menu, evident in the “Pub Grub Taste Test” series, at which undergraduates sampled competing products and rated their favorites. An excursion to a Boston area brewery founded by Harvard alumni was also organized, and students (all of-age seniors of the Class of 2006) sampled beers and choose the recipe for a unique brew to be served only at the Harvard pub. Students choose a well-balanced medium bodied beer with a moderately bitter hop finish dubbing it, fittingly, “1636.” The 176-seat, 12,000 square foot pub was built and opened for business April 2007. It can accommodate up to 450 guests. “The College administration is listening to students, and the message we hear is clear: ‘Social life is important to us, and we want the College to facilitate opportunities for on-campus social interactions with our peers,’” said Judith H. Kidd, associate dean of Harvard College for student life and activities, “The Queen’s Head will offer an open and inviting space to meet on campus, whether with an instructor or a group of friends. Our plans focus on programming and entertainment, as well as a full, reasonably priced food menu. We see beer and wine service for students of legal age as an accompaniment, not the centerpiece.” 9 The pub, designed by Boston architecture firm Miller Dyer Spears, was built at a total cost of $3,000,000. 10 Today, the pub provides ample study and social space, a performance venue for student groups, pool tables and dart boards, and a fully-functioning bar and restaurant. The bar is student-run, giving students valuable opportunities for management roles. Scott Smider, an alumnus with restaurateur experience, serves as general manager and oversees a staff of eleven student managers and one hundred student employees. While only those 21 and over may drink, the area is open for all students. Undergraduates, graduate students, student groups, faculty and staff alike utilize the area and it has become a focal point of campus life. On the following page are some pictures of the venue.

Steve Bradt, “Harvard College sets Cambridge Queen’s Head opening for April 19,” HARVARD GAZETTE, March 1 2007. http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2007/03/harvard-college-sets-cambridge-queens-head-opening-for-april-19/ 10 SCHOOL DESIGNS: HARVARD UNIVERSITY, CAMBRIDGE QUEEN’S HEAD – PROJECT DETAILS. http://schooldesigns.com/Project-Details.aspx?Project_ID=3239





1. There will be a bar/cafe/restaurant in the proposed New South Student Center. We should put the money towards there (or to something else, and just have that as the bar). This Pub is in no way intended to preempt any part of the New South Student Center, or the serving of alcohol at any locations within it. a. Timing. There's no telling when the New South Student Center will be built. The cost estimates range from $25-50 million, none of which has yet been raised. The creation of the student center may not occur for five or ten years, or even longer. We can build this space in a relatively short period of time, since the infrastructure is already there. b. Architecture. There's no telling what the café will look like. Healy is unique - the crown jewel of campus architecture. One simply cannot recreate the feeling of being in Healy elsewhere, as the attempted and failed revival of the pub in the Leavey Center demonstrated, and the New South Student Center would not even be a close attempt. c. Atmosphere. It is unclear whether the café will serve alcohol, whether it will be primarily a bar atmosphere that serves food (like Tombs) or a restaurant atmosphere that serves drinks (like a TGI Friday's). Additionally, this proposed pub is multifaceted, featuring study space, performance space, food and drinks. d. Ownership. It is also unclear whether the café will be student-owned and operated or not. Student ownership is a key factor in this proposal, giving students hands-on, real-world experience in managing a pub and restaurant. e. Funding. Students themselves, through the $3.4 million endowment, are offering to pay for Healy Pub. The University is then ultimately shouldering very little burden on themselves. If students overwhelmingly want a pub in Healy and are willing to pay for it, why not give them it? 2. This function is largely served by the Tombs. While the Tombs does have strong ties to campus and traditions such as 99 Days, it does not fully serve the goals outlined at the beginning of the report. First, the Tombs after-hours is only open to those students 21 or older. This functions to limit the Tombs primarily to juniors and seniors. Healy Pub would be open to students of all ages, although only those of age would be able to drink. Second, the Tombs is not primarily a study space. Healy Pub, like Harvard’s pub, would provide ample space for studying during the day. As it would be communal, student-owned space, no one would be pressured to purchase anything in order to stay, as in Tombs. Third, the Tombs is not student-owned and operated. There is a world of difference between Vital Vittles and CVS, even though they sell the same products; Vittles and its companion locations offer students real-world experience in running and managing a company. The Pub would give students the opportunity both to manage a bar and restaurant, bartend, manage events and more—something students do not currently have the opportunity to do at Georgetown.

Fourth, this project addresses the pressing concern of students to take back ownership of historic buildings. Students overwhelmingly desire to see student space in Healy. 3. Creating this will require moving several administrative offices. See “the Current Space in Healy”, page 6. 4. The project may be more expensive than $3.4 million. The cost of such a pub needs to be fully explored, but projects of comparable size (like Harvard's) were designed for $3 million. Alumni have indicated that they would donate to bring this to fruition, and the University Center Pub Alumni have formed an extensive network to facilitate this. Students could even contribute through a one time "levy" much like the Student Activities Fee; a $100 surcharge per student would raise about $700,000 extra in funds. Additionally, the endowment is still growing by 5-10%+ per year, which brings in approximately $170,000 to $340,000 extra per annum—meaning that the source of funds available will grow during the exploration and planning phases of the project. In soliciting architectural and construction bids, we can cap the initial bidding at a percentage (e.g., 80%) of the total endowment to cushion for any delays or overages. 5. Liquor licenses may be expensive to obtain. a. If the New South Student Center Café is to serve alcohol, it will have to go through the same processes. Whatever hurdles the NSSC Cafe will have to overcome, so will Healy Pub. The existence of the bar in the Leavey Center and Epicurian and Co. demonstrate that it is possible to obtain liquor licenses on campus locations. b. Licensing is not overburdeningly expensive, on the range of several hundred to several thousand dollars per year. 11 There are also different licenses and costs for beer and wine, and beer, wine & spirits. Nonetheless, this is certainly an issue that should be explored further. 6. The local community/ANC may be up in arms about it. See “Alleviating Neighborhood and Safety Concerns,” page 6. 7. Will there be enough students to run a full-time a bar and restaurant? The Pub is intended to be student-owned and operated and should be pursued as such to the greatest extent possible. Nonetheless, the responsibilities of running a bar and restaurant are manifold: Harvard’s Cambridge Queen’s Head Pub employs one general manager (a salaried university employee), eleven student managers and one hundred students (bartenders, busboys, servers, cooks, etc.). Employing non-students in some of these roles (e.g., as cooks, busboys or servers), just as providing a professional manager as an overseer, would not impair the spirit of a student-run operation. The Pub would still remain managed by students and give preference to hiring students to fill positions before turning to non-students.




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