A guide to Brock’s most confusing building

A common problem for new students is finding where their classes are on campus. Generally, once you understand which buildings are where this problem goes away, as most of Brock’s buildings are a straightforward series of hallways. There’s one major exception, however: Mackenzie Chown. 

It’s a common rumour among students that Mackenzie Chown (generally referred to as MacChown) was designed by a prison architect, with its interlocking hallways and confusing labelling being reminiscent of the techniques used to prevent escaped prisoners from getting too far. Whether or not that’s the case, it is true that new students and guests can wander in the building, just looking for a restroom, and spending twenty minutes roaming the halls and regretting their life choices up to this point. Luckily, navigation is possible after enough time spent in the building, and here are some tips to speed up this learning process.

The first major step: know which room you’re looking for. Sounds obvious, right? However, the Mackenzie Chown room codes are slightly different from the other buildings at Brock, and it can catch students off guard. A sample room code looks like this: MCC403. 

The MCC does not, as it may first appear, stand for Mackenzie Chown; it stands for Mackenzie Chown Block C. Mackenzie Chown is split up into multiple blocks, labelled A through J (minus I), with its room codes reflecting what block each room is in. If your class is in MCC403 and you mistakenly show up at MCB403, you’ll end up missing your class. 

So pay careful attention to what block you’re looking for. 

The rest of the course code follows the standard Brock rules: the first number represents what floor your room is on, and the second and third numbers are the room on that floor. So for MCC403, you’ll be looking for the third room on the… third floor. 

Once you know which room you want, the next step is finding the building. Mackenzie Chown as a whole is located on the north-east side of campus. It is to the east of Schmon Tower and the Thistle Complex, to the north of the Plaza Building and Cairn’s Complex, and to the south of the DeCew, Vallee, and Earp residence buildings. A good landmark if you’re not familiar with the Brock buildings is the roundabout that connects to Glendale Avenue (a.k.a., the small roundabout the buses don’t use); Mackenzie Chown is the closest building to it. 

Blocks A, B, C, and D

If you’re in blocks A through D, Mackenzie Chown is fairly painless. These blocks are all in a row, and thanks to the catwalks on the second and third floors, you can walk straight through them to get to your desired block. Blocks B and C each have a fork early on, but if you stick to the right you’ll stick to this path. You can enter Block A either from the Thistle Complex (it’s just past the Tim Horton’s) or from the catwalk from Plaza. You can enter Blocks B, C, and D either by walking through them from Block A, or via the outdoor entrances facing Cairn’s and Plaza. 

Block E

Block E is not, as you might expect, adjacent to Block D. Rather, it’s beside Block B. There’s an external entrance just south of DeCew, but you can also enter Block E by going to the second floor of Block B and looking for the fork in the hallway; take the left path. It’s recommended you use the second floor as not all of Mackenzie Chown’s blocks have third floors, and the first floors aren’t always connected. 

Block F

Block F is in the centre of Mackenzie Chown, adjacent to Blocks E, G, and H. The recommended routes are either to go through the entrance south of DeCew residence and head straight for the stairs, or to enter Block B through the external entrance opposite of Plaza then finding Block E and taking it straight to Block F.

Block G

Block G is odd. Students generally don’t need to go there, as it primarily houses Brock’s shipping and receiving services. However, there is exactly one classroom, MCG310. It’s located in the intersection of Blocks D and J, and you can get there the quickest by taking the entrance closest to Parking Lot A and then taking the stairs. Block G is also home to Pond Inlet, where Brock hosts a variety of special events; this can be accessed from the same entrance, but instead of taking the stairs, go straight through the doors.

Block H

Block H is notably more complicated than the other individual blocks, as it is a series of hallways rather than one or two paths. It used to be one of the easiest blocks to get into, as the entrance to Inniskillin Hall had a staircase leading right to Block H. However, that area is currently under construction, so until that is settled the best way to get to Block H would be to take the Block E entrance near DeCew, then turn left into Block H.

Block J

Block J is a good one to end off on, as it’s one of the easier ones to access. It has an entrance facing Parking Lot A; otherwise, you can get to it by getting to the second floor of Block D and walking all the way down it.

That’s all the blocks of Mackenzie Chown. Hopefully this guide can help you find the rooms you need, as well as practise your route to and from your room before school starts. It’ll be confusing for a while, but after the first few weeks you’ll start to find a route that works best for your schedule. Good luck!

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