Beta Theta Pi - University of Minnesota

Fall 2015 Newsletter

Beta Pi Chapter of Beta Theta Pi at the University of Minnesota

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A P u b l i c A t i o n o f t h e b e t A t h e t A P i S o c i e t y o f M i n n e S o t A the betA Piper FALL 2015 T he generous support of alumni enabled the Housing Corporation to start making major improvements on the property this fall. Early results look great and the chapter members love them! Retaining Wall The original wall was built in the '60s. Before it was removed, the wall was decaying and spilling onto the sidewalk. It was giving way to the shifting earth behind it and posing a potential hazard to pedestrians and liability for the house. Near the wall, we also removed an aging and unhealthy tree. The new wall was professionally constructed and anchored to a solid foundation, which should reduce weathering and prevent any shifting. This wall will outlive us all. We selected three brick tones, with the intent to pull colors from the existing house exterior and patio wall, while also giving it some U of M flair. We worked with Global Green and a local bricklayer. We will be adding in two bronze plaques to the wall, on the corner of 17th and University. These are being custom made with the Dragon and Shield of Beta. Total cost, with the change orders and plaques, will be approximately $43,000. Biggest learning on this is a.) insist on line-item estimates with time and materials broken out into specifics, and b.) make sure an expert is involved in the planning—thank you, Bill Madden '47! Kitchen Range Our chapter cook, Deb, estimates that the old range was installed in the late '40s to early '50s. At the end of its run, the old range only had two working burners, no working griddle, and the oven temperatures would vary by up to 100 degrees from the designated temperature. The new range is a Vulcan. It is 60 inches wide overall with four burners, a 46-inch griddle, and two ovens. This is an "old-school" design with non-electronic components, meaning it will last a lot longer. The final cost, after purchase and installation, was about $8,000. This was mostly organized by Deb and ordered through US Foods. Cian Chase '08 and many actives, along with a huge help from Deb's handyman, were involved with moving the new unit into the basement and moving the old one out. Wesley, Deb, and Cian were responsible for the final assembly. The result is very positive—Deb is happy and the guys love it. The biggest lesson was the planning and additional expenses necessary to move a large heavy unit like this up and down flights of stairs. What's Next? • Continue fundraising/campaign work through the end of the year o The more success we have raising funds, the more work we will complete next year! • Plan the major chapter house renovation projects for summer 2016 o Current plan: Close and empty the house after the spring semester in May, do major fixes May-August, and re-open for fall 2016 semester. o House Corporation is prioritizing what improvements we'll do in summer 2016. o Likely projects include installing a sprinkler system and rebuilding plumbing/electrical/networking/ security/safety systems. • Seek partners to lead the effort, define the renovation details, and execute the work. • Encourage feedback from alumni and the chapter members. House Corporation Makes Way With Renovations Retaining Wall, Kitchen Range Replacements a Success Progress of the new retaining wall. Beta's cook, Deb, alongside the new burner available to the undergraduates. (Continued on page 2) Don't miss the alumni event on November 19! Turn to page 6 for details.

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