Archive for Friday, July 31, 2009

On Saturday, KU auctioning three-story building on Indiana Street

The Varsity House near the KU campus is being auctioned off by the University. The building, at 1043 Indiana St., is expected to sell for about $400,000 although major repairs are needed.

July 31, 2009


Kansas University will be auctioning off a three-story building this weekend at 1043 Ind.

The former Varsity House building was built around 1900 and converted to office space after the late 1950s. The auction is scheduled for noon Saturday at the property.

Lynn Bretz, a KU spokeswoman, said the neighborhood, the city and the university all had no desire to let the building sit indefinitely, and a structure in need of repair sitting vacant can become a fire and safety hazard.

The property has a Douglas County appraised value of $411,330, according to the auctioneer’s Web site.

KU officials have estimated the cost of renovating the structure into usable office space could be more than $600,000. It would need to be ADA compliant, have an elevator, among other repairs.

Repairing the building was not feasible — especially given KU’s other building repair needs — so the decision was made to sell it, Bretz said. At the request of the neighborhood, the university agreed to sell lots next to the 6,180-square-foot house to accommodate parking needs.

Carol von Tersch, a board member of the Oread Neighborhood Association who lives near the property, said the neighborhood had been asking the university to sell the property for some time.

She said the university had worked well with the association throughout the process.

She said that she anticipated the property would garner wide interest.

“I don’t think there will be any shortage of bidders,” she said.

A previous version of this story listed the incorrect address for the house being auctioned.


Christine Pennewell Davis 8 years, 7 months ago

can I bid a buck and turn it in to a house? Kidding but with all my kids and grand kids in and out all the time a big space to let them loose in would be nice.

Jersey_Girl 8 years, 7 months ago

A picture would have been nice. Google Map doesn't get the address numbers right in Lawrence. Plus, there are big trees blocking the view from the street.

average 8 years, 7 months ago


The actual address is 1043 Indiana (1046 would be on the east side, where GSP's garage sits). It's the barn-looking house on the NW corner of 11th and Indiana.

Mike Blur 8 years, 7 months ago

The building is on the NW corner of 11th and Indiana.

The address given in the article is probably incorrect. With rare exceptions, even-numbered houses/buildings are on the east side of the street (south side in N. Lawrence.)

1046 Indiana would be the location of the GSP/Corbin parking lot. Put in 11th and Indiana in Google Street view and swing to the NW. The building is crystal clear.

Jersey_Girl 8 years, 7 months ago

Stupid Google Map has even numbers on both sides of the street. Average - is it the one with the parking lot on the left as you look at it?

infidel 8 years, 7 months ago

It sure would be nice if the story included any information on the auction process or how to bid, who was holding the sale etc.

Boston_Charley 8 years, 7 months ago

For a history of the house, see

(I posted this earlier, but it never showed up online. Apologies if this shows up twice later)

jimmyjms 8 years, 7 months ago

Marion, maybe you could buy the house and start another one of your wildly successful businesses?

Or perhaps it could serve as storage to "the files?"

puddleglum 8 years, 7 months ago

ada compliance=biggest farce ever. what a waste of money...I'm afraid of brass doorknobs, and I don't get any special treatment.

Raider 8 years, 7 months ago

Perhaps they can use it for the new homeless shelter? That's certainly cheaper than the $2mil they're wanting spend on a new one.

blakec 8 years, 7 months ago

I worked out of this building for KU from 2005-07. It is in awful condition and the stairs (for a four-story building) are absurdly steep and narrow. The energy used to cool and heat this building was crazy, as it was big and drafty. I think this was a good move by KU as they have many more important buildings to fix up. This building has always been used as a means to address crowding or overflow of services or students. It really has no use now.

Boston_Corbett 8 years, 7 months ago

Good history on the place Boston_Charley. Thanks for the link.

I know a couple of obscure facts about the place. They show up in that article, so I will not bore the readers, but recommend they read the delightful history your link leads to.

pennsyl 8 years, 7 months ago

Looking at DG CO records - appraisal value more than doubled from 2006 to 2007. 2006 = $270,300 and 2007 = $543,180. Hmm.

davidsmom 8 years, 7 months ago

It would be nice if the Journal-World would post an update to this story and tell us about how the auction went and what the sale price was.

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