June 13, 2017

UConn bookstore being redesigned as 'social hub'

RENDERING | Barnes & Noble
RENDERING | Barnes & Noble
An artist's rendering of the student lounge in the renovated UConn Bookstore in Storrs.

UConn's campus bookstore in Storrs is getting a multi-million-dollar physical makeover in time for the new academic year this fall.

With a new entrance from the outdoor seating area along Hillside Road and a full-service Starbucks café, the 45,000-square-foot UConn Bookstore will also feature a public seating area of 3,000 square feet on the second floor, overlooking Gampel Pavilion and the future site of the new Student Recreation Center.

Len Oser, general manager of The UConn Bookstores, says the changes aim to make the bookstore a meeting place for students, faculty, alumni and visitors. The work costs $3 million and is being paid for by Barnes & Noble, he said.

"We want this to be a much more exciting and engaging social hub," says Oser.

The first floor will have a more open look, with the removal of the glass wall near the entrance at the corner of Hillside Road and Jim Calhoun Way, and provide more seating at the new Starbucks café. An Apple Store, with computer purchase and repair services, and UConn branded clothing and gifts, will be located on the first floor

The public space on the second floor will be available for events and activities of up to 100 people, or partitioned for use by smaller group.

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