By Gabrielle Garza
KU’s South Dining Hall closed its downstairs eating area, The Golden Bear Food Court as of Thursday, March 3, 2016 for renovations.
The areas that remain closed include, the P.O.D. Market, Montague’s Deli, Bene Pizza, The Grill and Kutztown Perk.
Since this was taken away from on-campus student dining, the only place to eat on the south side of campus is the second floor in the South Side Café on the upstairs floor. The upstairs dining hall includes a buffet that runs from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. , every day of the week.
This change affected many workers that used to work on the downstairs floor, moving them to dining facilities across campus.
Ashley Kilroy, a South Dining Gall worker said, “My boss Paul Keldsen has helped with the transition. He asked us after spring break when we could work so I picked out the same schedule for the most part. It wasn’t as hard to work around it as I thought it was going to be.”
The closing for renovations didn’t only affect the workers, but also the students who like to eat downstairs. Many students prefer getting food to-go rather than sitting and eating. Also, some students may prefer to not eat at a buffet.
Kutztown Perk a popular coffee shop will be closed during renovations. Students will have to go across campus to get Java City beverages and breakfast.
A P.O.D. market will open by the upstairs South Side Café. This gives the workers who moved across campus other opportunities to work.
Kent Dahlquist, director of housing, residence life and dining services, discussed several renovations that will impact the university in many ways. Dahlquist said, “We are looking to renovate to provide a functional space for student social interactions.”
After renovations are complete, South Dining Hall will be open for 24 hours and will have a new meal plan program.
Students will now have to swipe their cards at the entrance.
There will also be a change of the furniture and room settings. Dahlquist said, “The left side of the dining area will have lounge space and chairs to eat and the right side with be more like a family setting with a fireplace in the middle.”
The food selection and menu will be changed as a result of the renovations. Breakfast foods will be added to the menu and there will be a waffle maker if students decide they want to have breakfast.
Dixon Marketplace will be available next door, but the P.O.D. Mini Market will eventually be taken out of the facility. A new video game room, new sound system and a computer lab with printing upstairs will be availbe.
“With the renovation of South Dining Hall being in progress, there are many good things to come that will
impact students,” said Dahlquist.
The university still has the remaining dining areas such as the Academic Forum and the Cub Café. Renovation and construction at South Dining Hall is expected to be finished in August of 2016 when students return to school for the fall semester.