Sorority Proposed to Replace Four Historic District Houses

Monday, February 20, 2017, 7:00 am
By: 
Jessy Gregg

Above: Architect’s rendering of what the sorority house would look like along Grand River Avenue, just east of Harrison Road

Next Generation Investment Properties, LLC, has filed a development application with the City of East Lansing for the purpose of building a three-story-tall sorority house in the Collegeville Historic District, across Grand River Avenue from Ardson Heights. Joe Goodsir, the contact named on the application, is also a partner in Community Resource Management (CRMC). which owns the four Historic District houses currently occupying the site where the proposed sorority house would be built.

The site of this proposed development is on the southeast corner of Harrison Road and Grand River Avenue. The southwest and northwest corners of this intersection are occupied respectively by the Delta Gamma sorority and the Psi Upsilon fraternity, as pictured below. There are a total of five sorority or fraternity houses within about one block of the site.

The following images show the houses that would be replaced if permission is obtained, at 717 West Grand River Avenue (white house on the left in the first photo), 723 West Grand River Avenue (green house with porch), 733 West Grand River Avenue (grey house with brick chimney), and 358 Harrison Road (yellow house).

The site is bordered on the east by the MSU Student Housing Co-op’s Elsworth ("Bowie") House, and to the south by the recently remodeled and enlarged Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity (the large white building shown to the right of the yellow house, above).

Because the area is within the Collegeville Historic District, East Lansing’s Historic District Commission will be asked to give special permission for the four existing houses to be demolished. The Commission plans to begin its next meeting at the site. (The Commission’s meetings are open to the public.)

The new plans call for a three-story tall, 14,000-square-foot structure with eleven one-bedroom units and fifteen two-bedroom units, for a total occupancy of 41 people. According to the City of East Lansing Code Enforcement Office, the current rental licenses on the four existing houses allow for a combined total of 20 people.

The new site plan also includes 24 parking spaces, including one barrier-free, handicap-accessible space. The two-story collonaded entrance to the building would face Grand River Avenue, with angled parking behind on the south and east sides. Parking spaces would be accessed via two drive-ways, one off Harrison Avenue, and the other off Grand River Avenue.

 

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UPDATE on this story posted March 3, 2017: click here to read the update.