Ex-fraternity house to be demolished - Purdue Exponent: Campus

Ex-fraternity house to be demolished

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Posted: Monday, February 18, 2008 12:00 am

Purdue Research Foundation announced Tuesday plans for the demolition of the recently purchased Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity house.

Joe Hornett, senior vice president and treasurer of the foundation, said inspections were performed on the house last week to see what could be done with the property. He said it was determined that tearing down the house, which was purchased for $1.5 million, was the most economic option.

"A number of options were explored for reuse of the facility, but the expense of conversion and the time likely for that site to provide a return for the Purdue Research Foundation were incompatible," he said.

After the structure is torn down, the 26,000-square-foot area will be converted into 70 or 100 surface parking spots.

"Parking spots will be available to faculty, staff and students on a first come, first serve basis as soon as we work through permitting with the city of West Lafayette and contract for the work after demolition," Hornett said.

Residents of the TKE house were informed over the summer that they needed to move out of the house by the end of July with the closing of the foundation's sale.

Ryan Kostolansky, a senior in the College of Liberal Arts and president of TKE, said he was disappointed in the sale of his fraternity's former residence.

"It was the nation's longest running TKE chapter," he said. "Right now everybody's not living together; we're all over," he said.

The chapter is still trying to function, Kostolansky said, and are looking for a more long-term living plan.

"We'll look for something that is able to house a few houses on the same street, so we can live somewhat close to each other," he said.

The chapter meetings are being held at The Lodge, an apartment at 2101 Cumberland Ave. in West Lafayette, where Kostolansky resides. He said they plan on rotating chapter meetings on a weekly basis at different houses on campus in the absence of a house.

"I'm pretty surprised about the demolition," he said. "I just found out today."

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