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Marketplace Renovations Aim to Ease Traffic, Incorporate More Stations

Glenn Rohrbacker, Editor in Chief

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Along with new meal plan changes for the Fall 2017 semester, the Marketplace will be getting its own renovations, aimed to change the layout of the space and the way students use it.

“Changes are really designed to create more options for students,” said Lou Annino, vice president for facilities at the University.

One of the major changes to what students are familiar with now will be moving the checkout stations to the side of the main staircase. Students will swipe their cards upon entering the food area, rather than when leaving it.

According to Annino, approximately 50 percent of the chairs and booths will be replaced, as most of which he said were replaced just a few years ago.

Annino outlined what he called the “natural progression” of the food service facilities on campus, which in his tenure here began with Jazzman’s, then moved to FöD, then WoW Café and Sandellas, and now the Marketplace.

He also said that the way the layout will be structured is due to direct feedback from students on what they wanted to see.

Space would still be allocated for social use, as, according to Annino, students would be allowed to sit in the Marketplace even without buying food.

Annino said that the goal of the project was to “provide separation and circulation,” while still trying to “preserve the social space.”

Changes will not only be made to the structural layout of the bottom floor of the Bartels Student Campus Center, but new food stations will be edited and created as part of Sodexo’s plan to offer students more variety.

According to the dining options website, stations around the food service area will include and all-day breakfast station, a burrito and Mexican station, a beach grill station, an American station, pizza and pasta station, a deli station, a creamery for yogurt, soup and ice cream, and a chef’s choice station as there is now. Another expansion is for the Simply Serving station, which includes gluten-free and allergy-free meals, as well as vegan and vegetarian and non-GMO “processed” foods. It says, “now you don’t have to wait for special meals.”

Aside from the student-focused renovations, improvements will be made to the back of the Marketplace in the kitchen area, including moving the catering space to a safer and more convenient location.

Annino said that construction will take place very soon after graduation, and will be a “fast-tracked” process in order to be finished by move-in. He said that there is really no good time to do a major renovation, especially now that many universities are operational year-round, but summer is the best time to get these things done.

Annino was confident about the process saying, “Even if I have to roll up my sleeves and do it myself, it will be [done].”

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Marketplace Renovations Aim to Ease Traffic, Incorporate More Stations