Carmichael Towers East to be imploded on July 31

The demolition is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. CDT and will last around 15 minutes.


Camden Hall

Carmichael Towers East, as photographed on May 31, 2021. (Photo curtesy of Camden Hall)

Stratten Labrum

Carmichael Towers East will be demolished on Saturday, July 31, at 9 a.m. CDT. After being delayed a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the implosion of Towers makes way for a new residential college on West End. This initiative is also part of Vanderbilt’s Academic Strategic Plan and FutureVU to support and promote the undergraduate residential experience.

“Residential colleges give students the opportunity to learn from each other, become more connected and benefit from the resources and wisdom available in the broader Vanderbilt community,” Vanessa Beasley, vice provost for academic affairs and dean of residential faculty, said in a July 21 press release

Due to Towers’ impending implosion, the press release states that individuals should remain indoors or evacuate the surrounding West End neighborhood beginning early in the morning of July 31. Along these lines, the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) and VUPD will be closing roads and establishing a blast perimeter in anticipation of the demolition. These restrictions will be lifted once the implosion has ended. Per the press release, the demolition will take approximately 15 minutes to complete and will be conducted by Layton Construction, LLC and Controlled Demolition, Inc

Carmichael Towers East and West were named after Vanderbilt’s third chancellor, Oliver C. Carmichael. They have been home to thousands of students since being completed in 1966 and were the university’s tallest buildings. Towers West was demolished on July 27, 2019. During the 2020-21 school year, Towers East housed first-years—its last residents—for the first time due to housing assignment changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Towers was a very ecstatic experience—I became friends with the roaches while also having a built-in alarm clock with the construction,” sophomore Matthew Stein II, Spring 2021 resident of Towers 2, said. “However, it’ll always be where I slept for three months of my life and met a ton of new people that could relate to the Towers experience. I am both happy and sad they are demolishing it, as it is a piece of Vanderbilt history.” 

Per past residents, Towers had a strong sense of community and fostered personal development. However, these residents also expressed excitement about the upcoming changes to campus.

“I think Towers being demolished is sad because it was a place of strong community and nostalgia on campus, but Towers leaving is making room for bigger and better residential spaces,” Jade Ayers (‘21), head resident of Tower 2 this past year, said. “It is definitely the end of an era, but it was time for a much-needed change.”