Fraternities move ahead with new housing plan

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November 16, 2010

1:17 AM

After months of planning, the architecture firm hired by the College of William and Mary has solidified some of the details of the proposed Greek housing project set to replace the fraternities’s current homes in the units.

Although nothing has been finalized, the firm has narrowed down potential options.

“There [were] three or four [locations] that they said were ideal, and I think they’ve narrowed it down to those three or four,” Inter-Fraternity Council President Ian Fenwick ’11 said.

In a series of three meetings, the firm presented fraternity representatives with three different architectural plans, including options for both two- and three-story variations. The multi-purpose bottom floor will be able to accommodate both small study groups and large chapter meetings through the use of French doors or moveable walls to open up space.

“It’s not a very big open public space, but it has the option to have an open public space,” Fenwick said. “We liked the fact that you could have that area if you wanted it, but we didn’t want it like that all the time.”

Fraternity representatives also pushed for a design with free-standing buildings, similar to those of the current Sorority Court.

“One of the things we want to keep intact is the feeling of a house,” Fenwick said. “Right now, the units look like a prison.”

Beyond choosing a location and design, budget issues remain a constant concern as the project progresses.

“We’re looking at a budget constraint,” Fenwick said. “We’re trying to meet this budget, to look at what we’d be willing to give up or not give up.”

The selected architecture firm is currently studying the feasibility of the different plans before presenting the final choices to College President Taylor Reveley.

According to Fenwick, the College will release a public document next semester announcing the final plans to the community.

Fraternity representatives are optimistic about the outcome of the housing project.

“The architecture firm has been really good in taking student input. [It’s] exciting stuff, everyone’s really hopeful,” Fenwick said. “We just don’t want to be let down.”

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