By Rebekah Winkler
There’s no place like home, and sorority women at UT Knoxville will soon have a home all their own.
Work is wrapping up on site preparation for Sorority Village on Morgan Hill. Construction of several of the development’s thirteen houses is expected to begin this summer. Working closely with the sorority chapters, the university hopes to welcome its first group of residents to Sorority Village in the fall of 2012. The remaining houses would be built over the next few years.
Thirteen of UT Knoxville’s seventeen sororities are funding their own residential facilities in the village. The university is funding one portion of the shared facility that will house administrative offices and meeting space. One sorority is funding the other portion to have a dedicated office and meeting space within that same common-use building.
The houses will range from 9,000 to 17,000 square feet and house as many as forty-eight women each. Each house is estimated to cost between $3 million and $5 million. Once construction is complete, the total private investment in Sorority Village is expected to exceed $45 million.
UT’s Board of Trustees approved a proposal in 2006 that set aside approximately twenty-one acres of university-owned property on the southeast corner of Neyland Drive and Kingston Pike, across from the university’s Visitors Center.
Sorority chapters are funding their houses in full through private donations and mortgage agreements that will be paid through residential rent and chapter fees. Alumni leaders of sorority chapters have been raising private funds for the project over the past several years.
“We appreciate the collaborative relationship with sorority leaders and our shared commitment to a high-quality development that will enhance what is scenic and historic land for the university,” said UT Knoxville Chancellor Jimmy G. Cheek. “Sorority Village will be a significant addition to our campus and the Knoxville community, as well as a great example of a successful private–public partnership.”
The individual chapters are responsible for their own house designs, which must conform to architectural guidelines set forth by the university. The development will be fenced and will incorporate modern security features. With a goal of keeping the land as picturesque as it has always been, landscaping plans will highlight the village site and streetscape. Sorority Village will have its own parking but also will be included in the university’s T bus service.
These sorority chapters are slated to build in Sorority Village:
- Alpha Chi Omega
- Alpha Delta Pi
- Alpha Kappa Alpha (space in shared use building)
- Alpha Omicron Pi
- Chi Omega
- Delta Delta Delta
- Delta Gamma
- Delta Zeta
- Kappa Delta
- Kappa Kappa Gamma
- Phi Mu
- Pi Beta Phi
- Sigma Kappa
- Zeta Tau Alpha