K-State Student Union construction continues

Daley Keister, worker at Qdoba, scoops toppings for Erin Gigger, senior in digital media, at the newly-opened resturant in the K-State Student Union. "I worked here during the summer so I got to see [the Union remodel] slowly come together," Gigger said. (Alanud Alanazi | The Collegian)

After the K-State Student Union renovations are completed, students will be able to eat at restaurants new to the building, including Just Salads and the Call Hall Ice Cream Shop.

While construction continues and contracts are being finalized, the restaurants in the Union should all be open by March 2017, according to Audrey Taggart-Kagdis, director of marketing and community relations for the Union.

The next restaurant to open will be Just Salads. The company began construction this week and is anticipating opening their third establishment in the U.S. in Manhattan in the next six to eight weeks, Nelda Gaito, senior project manager, said. The company has two other restaurants, one in Chicago and the other in New York.

Currently, Panda Express, Subway and Qdoba are open as options for lunch, in addition to food trucks parked in Bosco Plaza.

The rest will be opening one by one, as “construction deliveries continue,” Taggart-Kagdis said.

Chick-fil-A is awaiting equipment deliveries, but plans to open by mid-November, and Call Hall’s shop will possibly be open by Christmas, according to Gaito.

“Most everything should be done before the end of the fall term,” Gaito said. “By mid-October, we hope to have the first floor done.”

After the restaurants and other originally-planned construction is completed, the final phase will be renovating the Little Theater.

“In the spring, we’ll be renovating the Little Theater, and that will take most of the spring semester,” Gaito said. “We’ll also be renovating the Bluemont room, and that will be the last of it. Those were kind of last-minute additions.”

Union renovations began after students voted in Spring 2013 to pay an additional $20 per semester for 30 years for upgrades to the building, both structurally and aesthetically. The fee went into effect during the fall 2014 semester.

The groundbreaking for the $31 million renovation project was held on Sept. 2, 2015. The building has remained open throughout the construction process, although different areas have been blocked off or closed for student safety.