Real Cheap Real Estate?

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Housing prices across the country may be falling, but it’s hard to find a house as cheap as the one the UW’s School of Human Ecology (SoHE) is selling. Priced at just $1, the building at 1430 Linden Drive is now for sale to anyone who is willing to move it to a different location.

“[The building is] past its useful life for the School of Human Ecology,” says Angela Pakes Ahlman ’96, project manager for SoHE’s expansion plans. “And yet it’s a very charming and solidly built home. It just doesn’t give the school enough space, and we’d like to donate it to someone who is better suited to use it.”

SoHE is planning to expand its main building starting in late winter 2010, at which time the house at 1430 Linden will be in the way.

Completed in 1941, the house began life as a lab for the home economics department and was called the Home Management Practice House. Seniors in home economics were required to live there for two weeks, to test their household skills. In the 1960s, it was converted to office space, though it still retains the look of a single-family dwelling.

“It’s a well-built brick-and-stone colonial revival,” says Pakes Ahlman, noting that the school would rather see the building kept in one piece. She estimates that it would cost $135,000 to move the building from its current location to another site. If no buyers are found, the university will deconstruct the house and salvage some of its architectural elements for future construction.

As of press time, no buyer had been identified, but the school had planned to accept offers until the end of August.

Published in the Fall 2009 issue

Tags: Campus history, Student life

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