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Ivy's Parking Lot Photo Credit: James Anderson / The Daily Princetonian

Last month, the University acquired a parking lot behind Ivy Club. The price tag? $7.29 million.

The 0.53-acre parcel, currently the site of 22 parking spots and a narrow field, slopes down from the overlooking clubhouse to a set of brick gates on Ivy Lane. In obtaining the property, which lies just north of Ivy Lane and Western Way, the University has furthered its 2026 Campus Plan.

Among other steps, the Plan calls for the construction of six large buildings dedicated to engineering and environmental studies. 

In exchange for the lot, the University will cede a tiny parcel of land to complete a corner of Ivy’s rectangular property.

In a Feb. 28 online letter obtained by the ‘Prince,’ Dominic Moross ’90, Corbin Miller ’71, and Robert Engel ’86 of the Ivy Club Board of Governors told alumni and current members that the agreement comes after prolonged discussions with the University, which began in 2017.

According to the letter, Ivy Governor George Knight ’89 led the project, and the Board unanimously approved the final agreement.  

“The spirit of the discussion was that the Campus Plan represented an historic opportunity for the Club and the University to achieve a result that could be mutually beneficial,” the Governors wrote. 

“I would confirm for you that we agree with the contents of that message,” University Spokesperson Ben Chang wrote in reference to the letter. 

Ivy members have used the lot, which lies close to Powers Stadium, for tailgating, a tradition that may become impossible in light of University plans to construct a parking garage.

“From the Club’s perspective, many members and Governors were initially reluctant to consider a sale of the lot,” the Governors wrote. “It is currently used by our undergraduates, service providers, and visitors for parking, and by graduate members when they return for athletic events and during Reunions.”

Due to a long-term decline in students bringing cars to campus, however, they wrote that parking is “certainly not [the land’s] highest and best use.”

The agreement stipulates that Ivy will retain access to a public street, in addition to its Prospect Avenue driveway. To meet this requirement, the University’s current plan includes plans to build a service driveway and pedestrian walkway, called “Leafy Lane.”

The proposed walkway would run along the southern edge of Cottage Club, Ivy, Quadrangle Club, and Cannon Dial Elm Club and link Roper Lane to Ivy Lane.

The agreement also requires the University to pay an unspecified amount to cover the cost of erecting a new boundary fence or wall and of related reconfigurations in the club’s rear garden. The Governors wrote that due to Ivy’s annual property taxes of roughly $115,000 and its rising financial aid costs, it had planned even before the deal to launch a capital campaign. 

The $7.29 million, they wrote, will be used in part to undertake improvements on its clubhouse, including a new kitchen and pantry.

Members of Ivy Club either declined to comment or did not respond to request for comment at the time of this publication.

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