Nazareth Student Center getting a facelift


The picture above is a sketch of what the completed dining room in the Nazareth Student Center will look like with the mezzanine above the existing dining area.

Elysabethe Brown, News Editor

Renovations have begun in the heavy-traffic student center building. The remodeling will affect Nazareth in areas such as the dining hall, kitchen, The Woods Café, The Fireplace Lounge, the bookstore, and the third floor security offices. The remodeling is projected to be finished by Fall 2012.

Wendy Yankelitis, assistant vice president for building and grounds, explained that the whole building will be getting made over and touched up in a two-phase project, which will cost a projected $6.1 million.

The first phase is to move the security office, now located on the third floor of Nazareth to The Woods Café, which is on the first floor of Nazareth and will make the office handicap accessible.

Joe Garvey, vice president for business affairs, explained that the third floor will now be used for Chartwells. The mailboxes, which are currently located in The Woods Café, will be relocated. Yankelitis explained that because the mail will now be inserted through the back of the boxes, the mailroom will no longer have to be shut down, making is accessible to students 24/7. This first phase will start early February and end mid-May.

Also according to Yankelitis, phase two involves a complete renovation and upgrade of the kitchen equipment behind serving lines. The pantry will also be remodeled and repositioned. A mezzanine will be added on the high side of the dining hall to be used for conferences and events, which will add about 250 seats. “If the population grows, there is the possibility it could be for students to dine there,” said Yankelitis. The cafeteria will close May 14, after graduation, and will remain closed all summer. A satellite kitchen located in The Mellow Center will be used to feed students.

Now that a new level will be added to The Fireplace Lounge, the room will soon boast a second fireplace. The space will be able to be divided into two different spaces, and could ideally hold three different events at the same time.

“SAC movie nights will now be in The Fireplace Lounge, which will make it more homey,” said Carl Oliveri, director of student activities. Movie nights had previously been held in The Comerford Theatre, which is a lecture hall. Oliveri hopes that a projection screen could be built into the ceiling to make it more of a movie theater-type area.

Yankelitis explained that the decision to remodel was an effort put forth by both students and faculty. “We are getting bigger. We have to make more space for everyone,” she said.