Capital Campaign's History

History of Chapter Improvements:

Your chapter house has undergone a number of renovation projects, both large and small over the past twenty years. Major projects include; remodeling and re-equipping the kitchen ($50,000); renovation of the second and third floor bathrooms ($100,000); and adding two bedrooms, a ½ bath, and other improvements to the Dollhouse ($40,000). Smaller projects include new and repaired roofing ($18,000), replacement windows ($19,000), two boilers $20,000, hot water system ($6,000), electrical upgrades ($5,000), and this year, a new fire alarm system ($22,000) and wireless internet system ($6,000). These replacement and renovations projects were necessary just to sustain our 70 year old chapter property, and exceed $250,000. Maintenance and repairs add many more thousands of dollars to the cost of providing a safe and decent home for our active brothers to reside, learn and share the experiences we shared in our youth.

East Lansing Environment:

In recent years the cost of owning and maintaining property in the City of East Lansing has risen faster than chapter revenues. The City licenses the chapter for occupancy and limits the number of brothers that can live in the house – limiting the revenues available for improvements after paying fixed costs. Property Taxes now exceed $1,000 per month, fire insurance is $400 per month, and the mortgage adds another $2,000 per month. The City has also become aggressive with inspections and demands for repairs and improvements, further taxing our resources. Several fraternities and sororities shuttered their houses in recent years, as a direct result of pressure from city officials . . . demands our chapter thus far have met.

Engineering Study:

In early 2001 the ACB hired an engineering firm to study and report on the condition of the building and mechanical systems. The good news: Our house was well built and structurally in good condition. The not so good news: The mechanical and safety systems are old and in need of updating, and a number of interior and exterior items require attention. These repair costs were estimated at $75,000.

Our review of the study’s findings, along with meetings with actives and alumni resulted in a multiphase renovation plan. The basic plan: address mechanical system and safety needs; provide internet communication access; complete a major facelift of the interior public areas; and reconfigure portions of the first and lower levels to more efficiently meet the living and educational needs of present day actives.

Feasibility Study:

During the summer of 2001 the ACB hired the Delta Sigma Phi Foundation to study and measure the enthusiasm of Alpha Pi Alumni to financially support our chapter. The DSP Foundation had recently completed its own very successful campaign, lead by Tony Smercina, a former Executive Director of the National Fraternity, and the Executive Director of the DSP Foundation. Thirty alumni were interviewed regarding their level of concern, respect, confidence and attitude toward the proposed project. The results were encouraging as the interviewed alumni recognized the need for renovation and indicated a strong willingness to financially support the project.