Work has once again begun on the Fraternity House project. After some delays due to the Zoning approval process, the board decided to modify the existing plans to break off the basement expansion as a separate project. We finally received our permit on Monday, August 8th. Now, we are ready to start building!

The masons have been working on the final interior brickwork this week, and they should be finishing all their work by the end of next week. The interior carpentry should begin on Monday, August 22nd at the latest, with a materials delivery scheduled for this Friday. By the end of next week, enough of the rough carpentry should be finished to begin putting the windows in. We are finalizing bids for the Heating and air conditioning, plumbing, insulation, and electricity. All that mechanical work should begin the week August 29th. 



We will give updates as we make more progress. We appreciate everyone's support in helping to make this a great project!
 
 
The renovation of our Fraternity House is progressing swiftly, contrary to the glacial efforts to begin the process. All the exterior permits approved (windows, masonry, and roofing), as well as the interior demolition. The deposit has been put down for the windows, so they should be queued up in the manufacturing process and will be ready in 8 to 12 weeks. The masonry work is now in its final stages.
The interior demolition is also almost completed. The second and third floor have been totally opened up, as you can see.
The first floor has been mostly gutted, except for the historic design and ornamentation that we are retaining. The back stairs and the old utility closet will soon be only a distant memory.
Although watching the House get torn apart is bittersweet, there have been some wonderful surprises. We have found quite a few historical artifacts hidden behind walls, including checks from 1943! We will report on them when we have had time to review everything. The best thing about this destruction, though, is knowing that rebirth will follow.


When the tuck pointing is finished sometime next week, the roof work will begin. The city is in the process of reviewing the interior plans and has already given us a few minor change requests. The plans continue to move through the departments, and everything looks like it will work out favorably. Once, we get approval, the rebuilding will begin. Keep checking back to see the progress we make as we Revitalize Chi Upsilon!


 
 
Ground was broken on the Fraternity House renovation on Friday, April 1st. It has been so long in coming that it almost seemed like an April Fools prank. The masonry permit was approved, along with the demolition permit, so Highland Developers, our contractor, went to the site to begin removing obstructions to allow the tuck pointing to begin. As you can see, all the ivy has been removed from the front of the House.

The interior demolition started today. The bedrooms on the third floor are the first to get torn up. The work will start at the top and go down floor by floor. It's not pretty right now, but it is the necessary first step to restoring our House to its original beauty. 

The demolition should be finished in about 2 weeks. During this time, the masonry work will proceed as well. The brickwork should be fully refurbished in two to three weeks, and then work on the roof will begin.

It's nice to imagine the House restored to pristine condition, but it's even better to consider the changes that will be made to improve the facility. One of the changes is already evident. There will be a door leading from the kitchen directly onto the back deck. This will help facilitate outdoor gatherings and meals.
It's hard not to get excited about what's happening to our Fraternity, but the work has only just begun. This is a momentous chapter in Chi Upsilons history, but it is also a challenging one. Our anonymous matching donor has just contributed his first $250,000, but we still have a ways to go before we meet the match. We need to raise another $400,000, and the work won't get finished if we don't have everyone's support. So, please help create another great era in our chapter by contributing to the Revitalize Chi Upsilon Campaign!
 
 
Construction is about to begin on the Fraternity House. After a few weeks of drawing plans, Ellipsis architects put us in contact with Quaker Windows and Doors. Quaker is going to create custom modern energy efficient windows to replace the old, dilapidated windows. For those concerned about historical authenticity, Quaker is designing the windows to meet the specifications of the Landmarks department in the City of Chicago. 


We have contracted with Highland Developers to oversee the exterior project. The project has been broken into exterior and interior because of the City of Chicago's permitting process. The exterior permitting can be expedited due to easy review procedures if it is separate from the interior. The exterior permits have been submitted to the city, and we anticipate that we will have approval around the end of March. Once we have approval, we can begin the masonry and roof repair. Then, as soon as the windows are manufactured, they will be installed.


The cost all of this exterior work is well within our budget. We are still waiting for the final plans for the interior work, which we should get in the next few weeks. Once those plans are complete, we can begin bidding out the rest of the work. When we have numbers on that, we will be able to submit those plans to the city for the permitting process. If the quality of work and costs prove to remain competitive, we hope to continue our relationship with Highland Developers for the interior work. 


If you have any other questions about the project. feel free to contact Rob Tamillow.
 
 
We have preliminary designs! We have been working with the architects at Ellipsis to develop the best design possible for our Fraternity House, and things are looking great. Paul Tebben has put together an exceptional plan for the House that has maintained the historical integrity of the building while maximizing the utility of the space for the fraternity's needs. As you can see below, the entryway remains very similar to the original design, with the grand staircase anchoring the space. The dining room has filled the middle of the House, creating an open space focusing on the centrality of dining and socializing.
The redesigned basement is the most radical re-envisioning of the House. This newly useful space will most likely become the focal point of most of the chapter's studying and recreation, minimizing noise levels in the rest of the House. The added space will be a huge benefit to the brothers, making living in the House much more comfortable with the greater number of brothers in the chapter. 
The second and third floors retain some of the classic elements of the House while reorganizing some rooms for the best use of space. The second floor has a large communal bathroom and shower space. This floor will most likely be for underclassmen.
The third floor will be populated by upperclassmen and cabinet. There are several singles, and the shared bathrooms are part of suite style living spaces. All the bedrooms will contain modular furniture, similar to the dorms.
We believe these designs preserve the best historical aspects of the Breasted House while rehabilitating it to properly suit the needs of the modern fraternity. We hope that all our graduate brothers feel the same way. 
 
 
The day has finally come to close down the House. Our beautiful, historic Fraternity House was cleaned out during the summer and boarded on November 20th. This is just the first step in rehabbing this beloved building.


The Chi Upsilon Alumni Association has engaged ELLIPSIS Architecture  + Design to draw plans for our House and lead the project. Founder Paul Tebben is a talented architect who has done extensive work in Chicago, particularly in the Hyde Park area. We are excited to have him on board. He has an article on his website related to our project here. Right now, we are in the design stage, and we will begin the permitting process before the new year so that we can stay on track to complete the project before next Fall Quarter. 


With the help of brother Rob Quaco '94, we will be redesigning the interior so that we can maximize the utilization of the whole House for the undergraduates. Rob runs Q-Real Estate Partners, LLC (www.q-rep.com), a real estate investment and project management company in the New York area, and we are glad to have a talented Fiji to help make this project as top notch as possible while keeping the costs within reason. Rob and Paul will ensure that we maintain the historic character of the House while updating it to serve the needs of our Chapter in the 21st century. 



We will continue posting pictures as the work progresses. The House is in rough shape right now, but the Revitalization process is only beginning. Please reach out to any members of the steering committee if you would like to make a commitment to the project. We need everyone's support to make it a success!