- Cooperative House -
The ICC first discussed building its own "cooperative village" on North Campus during the mid 1950s, when the University
announced its plans to house the art and engineering schools there. In 1958, government funds became available for long-term,
low-interest loans for cooperatives on college campuses. The University was required to co-sign the loan, and unfortunately
the University administration was reluctant because they feared that all the Fraternities and Sororities might request the
same kind of assistance. The North Campus project lay dormant until 1964, when Congress amended the law to make the signatures
of universities no longer requisite.
Because of the strict selection criteria, no student co-op had yet received a HUD loan when the ICC sent in its five-pound
application in 1968. HUD approved the application a few months later, and a delegation from the ICC traveled to Chicago
to collect the prize. The unlikely group of real estate moguls attracted some attention in the stuffy government offices.
Luther Buchele remembers:
One middle aged woman in the HUD office noted the long hair on John Atchaz, John Gourlay, Rex Chisholm, and Smokey Geyer.
She said haughtily to me "This must be a delegation of visitors." "Would you like to loan a group like this a million dollars?"
I asked. She answered, "I certainly would not!" I then informed her that HUD had indeed made such a loan and she looked
All North Campus co-opers are members of Escher, which is comprised of the common areas, exterior of the building, and grounds.
These houses are divided into suites of 16 to 20 people, each with a TV lounge, kitchen, four shower and four toilet rooms.
These intimate arrangements facilitate social interactions and make the house feel smaller than it really is. Escher
has nine suites: Valhalla, Bertrand Russell, Karma, Falstaff, Trantor-Mir, Walden III, John Sinclair, Bag End, and Zapata.
Some suites have a distinctive character that persists over a few years. Members of these suites primarily identify with their
suite, but they are also integrated with the rest of the house. Suite members have priority in control over the TV, etc., although
members from other suites are welcome.
Living up to its name, the co-op is comprised of a diverse range of people across all continents who share an equally wide
range of interests. Numerous foreign languages are spoken and rarely does one not get exposed to new and interesting cultures.
The house is predominantly occupied by graduate students. A quiet setting amenable to the studious, Escher is an ideal
place for the academic. However, not to be outdone by its Central Campus cousins, the co-op also offers many social activities
that range from wild parties to ice cream socials to football in the yard. Hey, we have to let loose too.
More than just a place to live, however! The social side of Escher
|The drumcircle playing at a recent party
||Members hanging out at the bonfire
|One of the neighbors
||Recent North-Campus Co-op party!
|This is what our back yard looks like!
||King Mob playing at a house party
|Members speak over 30 languages
|We welcome vistors, come for a tour and check us out!
Every year at Escher brings in new faces, new cultures, new friends. The one constant at the house is the friendliness, fun,
and a commitment to make the cooperative environment work.
Don't want to live here but don't want to cook? Be a boarder here and for a very affordable price you get 7 meals a week
plus access to unlimited cereal, milk, bagels, bread, and much more!
hope you're interested in joining us.
Email the president here
to arrange to come over for dinner and check out our house!
ICC Office: 337 E. William St. / Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(734) 662-4414 / fax (734) 662-5870