Nearly three years after being established at UF, Gamma Phi Beta will have its $10.5 million house completed in August.
The three-story housing development, located at 1251 SW 9th Ave., began construction in Fall 2017, said Nicole Schroeder, housing and facilities administrative assistant at Gamma Phi Beta International Sorority.
Jack Causseaux, director of UF Sorority and Fraternity Affairs, said the Gamma Phi Beta house is considered off-campus based on its location. Causseaux said a new housing development for an organization typically costs between $4 million and $8 million to build.
UF’s Gamma Phi Beta chapter was established in October 2015. Planning stages for the house began about a year later, Schroeder said. Gamma Phi Beta Facilities Management Company purchased the land for the house and financed it. UF is not funding the construction.
Gamma Phi Beta’s building will be about 24,000 square feet and house 71 members of the chapter in double and triple-style rooms, Schroeder said.
“Living in a chapter facility allows the opportunity to bond with sisters and a place where members can gather and create memories,” Schroeder said.
In addition, the house will also feature several study lounges, TV rooms and a three-room suite for the facility director, she said. Members will also have scooter and bike parking available, and the building will be accessible to people with disabilities.
Rachel Crowley, a UF health education and behavior junior and member of Gamma Phi Beta, said a house will allow their chapter to be more involved in the Greek community.
“I think it will bring us even closer as a sisterhood,” the 20-year-old said.
Having a house for the chapter will give members the opportunity to host meetings and events, as well as invite friends in other chapters to meals and tell them more about Gamma Phi Beta, Crowley said.
“I can’t wait to have a place that we can really call our own,” Crowley said.
A new house will enable the sorority to offer more bids for students wanting to join Greek life, Causseaux said.
Gamma Phi Beta is not the only Greek organization which will get a new home soon.
A lot by Hume Hall has also been designated for Greek housing, but has not been purchased or leased yet, Causseaux said. Greek Affairs is having conversations with Greek organizations about the space.
After Pi Kappa Phi’s house was demolished in June, its new house is on track to reopen by Fall, Causseaux said. Reconstruction for the house, located at 11 W. Fraternity Row, costs $4.7 million, according to Alligator archives.