Coming next Fall there will be new changes coming to Queens Dining. Queens has announced renovations coming to not only the dining hall, but also the Lion’s Den, Einstein’s and the Rodgers commons, and the bookstore.
The dining hall plans have been posted in the cafeteria for a few weeks now, with concept art showing a more modern look and four new dining options. After renewing the contract with Chartwells, Queens is using the new funding to expand their dining options and renovate most of Trexler. With those renovations will also come a change to the Lion’s Den. Currently located in the basement of Morrison, the Lion’s Den will be moved to the area where Claudia Belk Dining Room is now, and will be renamed to “The Market.”
The Market will include some of the same features as the Lion’s Den, such as later hours than the cafeteria and an outdoor patio. It will have a salad bar similar to one found in a typical grocery store along with an assortment of other fresh foods, including fruits and vegetables.
The space the Lion’s Den currently occupies in downstairs Morrison will be turned into a catering kitchen for Chartwells. “[It] allows them to take all of the orders for catering- the events for catering- out of the kitchen that now supplies the dining hall,” said Patrick Motter, assistant dean of Student Engagement. Currently, both catering orders and meals for students are made from the same kitchen in Trexler. Motter reasons that the shift will be easier for both catering and the Dining Hall to be more efficient, allowing for more space for each.
Though the Lion’s Den is being removed and converted into a market and the dining hall is undergoing substantial rennovations, the Coffee House and Einstein’s will remain unchanged. However, the bookstore is being moved to the Levine Center in Rodgers commons, the study and lounge space where Einstein’s is currently located. The soft seating by the fireplace next to Einstein’s will remain, while the bookstore will occupy the rest of the area.
“What we’re hoping for is more of a Barnes and Noble/Books-a-Million Cafe bookstore combo,” said Motter. He also added that this will be beneficial when there are athletic events as well as tours being given.
The bookstore will start minor renovations after Spring break. Einstein’s will remain open during the renovations, but the study space will be undergoing construction of fixtures. However, the furniture and TV spaces will be moved into the Levine Lobby, which Motter sees as being more of a lounge space.
“One of the reasons we’re starting earlier in Levine is we want overlap or no dead-time for the bookstore,” said Motter. The dining hall’s renovations will start the day after graduation in preparation for the next academic year.
When entering the 2019-20 school year, Royals will have new options opening up to them as Queens continues to grow.
Photo taken by Mabry Busby (’22).