By Karen Gadbois, The Lens staff writer |
Tulane on Tuesday dumped a frat house into the dustbin of Greek history to make way for a new campus police station.
A wrecking crew made quick work of the former Pi Kappa Alpha house at 1036 Broadway, catty corner to The Boot, a popular campus watering hole. Tulane paid $500,000 for the building it has now demolished.
The “Pike” house was shuttered after two pledges were hospitalized following a spring 2009 hazing incident in which they were doused with crab boil and scalding water. Ten frat members turned themselves in after arrest warrants were issued, but Orleans Parish prosecutors decided against bringing charges against them.
At a March 21 Neighborhood Conservation District Committee meeting the frat house was cleared for demolition but the timing of it replacement as a police station remained unclear.
At the hearing Mark LeBlanc project manager for Tulane University stated that plans called for putting a police substation on the empty lot but that it would not be built until financing was 100% in place.
“Construction will probably begin in late fall,” Tulane spokesman Michael Strecker said Tuesday.
Why the delay? Tulane is hiring a new police chief and wants “to get his or her input in the design of the new building,” Strecker said. In the interim, the site will be a well-maintained grass lot, he added.