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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Roth Quad Renovations Taking Longer than Expected

    When Allie Russo sprinted out from under a canopy of maple trees in Roth Quad with her mouth watering at the thought of a chicken nugget, her jaw dropped at the unexpected sight before her: Roth Dining Hall was gone.’
    Roth Dining Hall still stood where it had been for the past forty-two years.’ However, for Russo, it was as good as gone.’ A chain link fence entrapped Roth.’ From this fence hung a white, cardboard sign that read: closed for renovation.
    The Roth Quad dining hall is not scheduled to re-open until August 2008.’ Some residents and commuters glare with disgust at the building every time they walk by and are reminded that their quad is the only one without a dining hall.’ ‘With the drastic increase in the student population, if they were going to renovate Roth, they should have done so last year when there weren’t nearly so many kids,’ said Russo, 20, a commuter.’
    Over the years, many students have preferred Roth over the SAC.’ ‘We were surprised at how many commuters actually used Roth during the day, it was really unexpected,’ said Lisa Ospitale, Director of Marketing and Communications for Campus Dining Services.’ Roth dining has served over 25 million meals in the last 4 decades.’
    The constant heavy traffic the dining hall received has taken its toll on the building.’ ‘This is not just a makeover, this is a complete renovation,’ said Ospitale.’ The entire Roth dining hall renovation will cost $11 million and be overseen by Beyer Blinder Bell Architect and Planners LLP.’
    The construction will be paid for through state grants and a $27 increase in commuter and resident meal plans.’ ‘That’s not totally fair because what about commuters and students in the West Apartments who don’t have meal plans,’ said Katie LoBiondo, a Tabler Quad resident.’ This is a loophole, acknowledges Angela Agnello, Director of Marketing and Communications for the Faculty Student Association.’ The fee will be added to meal plans starting next fall.’
    ‘We always used to say that Roth Quad is held up by duct tape,’ said Ospitale. The inside of the building has been completely gutted and the new building will have new plumbing, new electric, and better utilize the downstairs space, unlike the previous Roth dining hall.
    Christine Lee, a Roth resident, is still skeptical of the renovation.’ ‘Other renovations that started in the summer are pretty much completed or about to be pretty soon,’ she said.
    According to Ospitale the renovation is taking longer than other campus renovations because Roth dining hall is receiving a new kitchen.’
    The construction in the Stony Brook Union, which was completed before the semester began, added five new meal stations to the dining area, but kept the same kitchen.’ Since the Roth kitchen is being completely redone with new, energy efficient appliances, more time is needed to complete the project.’ ‘ ‘
    The hassle of the closed dining hall is what students are most concerned about.’ ‘It’s really inconvenient because you can’t just walk across and get food anymore,’ said Lee.’ Lee’s concerns are echoed by Russo who used to retreat to Roth to escape the overcrowded SAC so she could ‘at least hear [herself] think.’
    While students complain of the inconvenience the Roth dining hall renovations has caused, there are still over six places to eat on campus.’ Other SUNY schools, such as SUNY Cobleskill and SUNY New Paltz have fewer than four main dining areas and SUNY Purchase has just two for the entire campus.’ All of these schools’ dining facilities have very limited hours of operation.
    Ospitale assures residents and students the university is doing everything possible to ensure that students are not inconvenienced.’ There is a bus that now directly runs from Tabler to the SAC.’ The Union, SAC and Tabler eating areas have increased their hours and the Kelly Quad eating area is now open 24-hours from Sunday through Thursday.
    ‘Once students see all the new eating areas, Wendy’s, the new pizza place, a hot sub place, an area they can get different types of chicken,’ they will be impressed, said Ospitale.’
    ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

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