Welcome to the East Coast!
I am going to guess that since you referred to the East Coast, you may not be from that area? As someone who lives in CT, I can promise you two things:
Since everything was built a long time ago, when things were smaller and older, you get that vibe from a lot of places, ranging from Syracuse to WPI to in this case Wesleyan. Many of these colleges were not built with the “college town” arriving later around it, they were built next to a thriving and dominant NE city (Syracuse, Worcester, and Hartford in this case). Many West Coast and Southern schools were built 100 years later, with an entirely different mindset (large, pretty campus first, academics second). In NE, it was all about small, cramped dorms where the only thing that mattered was the education (and churches!). Some schools have done a better job than others with their buildings and their campus overhauls. Wesleyan is very small (3000 students, in comparison, my children go to a HS in CT with 2200 students), and so it is likely harder for them to grow and build out quickly.
Everything looks nasty in February and March, even early April. I have to remind my kids of this when we tour schools in the Northeast. Places bloom in mid April and by May they can be gorgeous. Same is true for the Fall, as it’s nice weather, very attractive through November, and then we go into that “time of year you don’t want to tour” between December and March.
Wesleyan is a fantastic school, and like many East Coast schools, academically rigorous. West coast is known for being easier to get “A” grades, East Coast not as much, but it will be rewarding in that job prospects will be strong.
Ironically, we are going through a similar debate right now. D2 was accepted to RPI and WPI, excellent engineering schools, but similar campus situations. Not terrible by any means, but old, and old/small dorms. Especially for freshman. Meanwhile, she is also going to take a look at Purdue, Virginia Tech, and Michigan State (visiting all 3 for the first time next week), which all have huge campuses, a wide variety of dorms, and so forth. She knows deep down that the academics are strong in the engineering schools here on the East Coast. We shall see where she ends up picking!