Students petition Arizona State University's new Greek housing project

Posted at 4:36 AM, Apr 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-25 15:36:25-04

A project that will allow fraternities to once again live on Arizona State's Tempe campus is already facing criticism. 

There are at least twoonline petitionsagainst the $70-million "Greek Leadership Village" under construction on the southeast corner of Rural and Terrace roads.  

Together the petitions have gathered around 250 signatures.   

"It might be great for another organization or group of students on this campus -- but a lot of people don't think that it's great for Greek life on this campus," ASU junior and Pi Kappa Alpha member Austin Bloom told ABC15.   

Bloom was nominated by his fraternity to serve on a committee tasked with working alongside the university to design the project. He resigned in January.    

"I just didn't feel that the concerns and needs of the students, both the ones at ASU, alumni, national organizations, were being properly answered and taken care of."   

He says chapters are required to sign four-year leases and meet stringent occupancy standards. Of the thousands of students who are part of Greek organizations at ASU, Bloom says a lack of space, inadequate parking and amenities -- such as a fitness center -- prompted him to start the petition. Some fraternities have been living in off-campus apartments which, by comparison, he feels are more cost-effective than what's being built.

"You could, literally, probably throw a baseball from where this is going to go to where any of the other places on the same side of the road are that have better parking amenities."

ABC 5 reached out to university officials regarding the number of organizations that have committed to living at the facility, the cost of the project and if these concerns were being looked at. We haven't heard back.

In a statement, ASU said: 

"The Greek Leadership Village, scheduled to open Fall 2018, will be located on the corner of Rural and Terrace roads in Tempe. The 950-bed housing complex comprised of 27 chapter spaces will also include a Fraternity & Sorority Life Community Center. The Fraternity & Sorority Life Community Center will feature a ballroom, event & meeting room spaces, lounge areas, offices for the governing councils and staff members, and a dining location. The Greek Leadership Village will provide a central gathering space to support chapter programs and initiatives and strengthen the sense of community among the fraternity men and women of ASU."