Marilyn Ogaro, assistant food service director for Campus Dining, cuts a cake at a farewell party held in honor of the Croatan dining location. Photos by Cliff Hollis.
ECU says goodbye to Croatan building
(May 1, 2009)
The East Carolina University community said goodbye to a campus landmark May 1 with free food, prizes and a going-away cake.
The farewell party was held in honor of the Croatan dining hall, which will serve its last students May 7. Located on the eastern side of campus near Brewster and the Rivers Building, the Croatan will soon be demolished to make way for a new two-story dining location.
Joyce Sealey, food service director at ECU, said the university is excited about the project. “With enrollment increasing, we needed more dining options. We had no room to expand, so this was the logical place to put a new building,” she said.
The new structure will more than double the size of the current Croatan, built in 1970. The location has long been a hub for students and faculty members seeking snacks and meals in between classes. It serves about 3,000 customers per day.
When its doors close on May 7, the Croatan will be stripped of tables and equipment to prepare for a June demolition. The Chick-fil-A Express will reopen in the fall at Destination 360 in the Mendenhall Student Center.
The new building, which will open by January 2011, will house two foodservice brands, Chili’s Too and an expanded Chick-fil-A Express. Private and public dining areas will be available on the first floor; the second floor will house Chili’s Too, where customers can order at a counter and dine in a restaurant seating area.
Sealey said she hoped the different dining options attract more customers from both on and off campus. “The Chili’s Too will be our first restaurant concept, and we’re all excited about that,” she said.
The structure will also be the first LEED-certified building on campus, Sealey said. LEED ratings measure the environmental sustainability of a building. Special lighting, water cisterns in the courtyard and ecologically friendly landscaping are among the features planned for the project.
For more information, call Stephanie Sumner at 328-2627.