Goodnight Raleigh - a look at the art, architecture, history, and people of the city at night

The Steam Tunnels of NCSU: Part 1

It’s fairly common for universities and government agencies to have a network of steam pipes (such as the ones that feed the state government buildings), and NCSU is no exception.

I’ve heard about them off and on over the years, and have always been intrigued by the thought of a subterranean network of secret tunnels, rooms, and machinery hidden below the surface.

Despite the number of words left on walls in the photos here, most of the network consists of nondescript pipes and passageways connecting various parts of campus.

There are several stenciled works denoting various groups that have traveled here over the past few decades. The earliest date I saw was 1985 as seen in the stenciled piece above, but I’ve been told there are some that date back to the 1950s.

I’d like to give credit and thanks to uliveandyouburn for showing me around this surreal and hidden network.

UPDATE: For more photos of the the Steam Tunnels, check out Part 2.


Discuss Raleigh

  • Recent Comments:

    • Hector: Great find! I visited the reactor in the 90’s, and I loved the sign on the front of the building that...
    • Jim Webster: Did the original Johnny’s have a “Johnny’s” monogram on their drinking glasses?...
    • Schteveo: Holy crap that’s funny.
    • LJG: Pipe screens! God I remember when me and a buddy took almost ever screen from the men’s lavatories in the...
    • scott t: I was in Metcalf Dorm and watched people scrambling to flush weed. the RA’s were paid off worked...
    • Jim McGonigal: I have great memories of the Pier. My Dad had come over to Raleigh from the UK in the early 80s to...
    • Tom: Part of the control panel for the reactor (pictured in the article) is now in the collection of the North...
    • Santos: The building in the background is the Zoology building which was demolished in the mid-50s and replaced by...


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