Brooks the Bison will be the face of a new dining service opening in the spring 2018 semester.
Brooks’ Stop, a convenience store, grill and coffee shop, will replace the old housing office near on-campus housing. The building was scheduled to open in early August, but due to setbacks, the finish date was pushed back to October, then November, and now January.
Sherry Ruesch, the executive director of facility management, said the project has been pushed back due to necessary removal of hazardous materials, and challenges with contractors. The building was found to have asbestos, which the cleaning and removal of lasted all summer.
The store will cater to student housing needs and provide a convenient option for students who live on-campus and off-campus at surrounding housing complexes. Brooks’ Stop combines the offerings of Trailblazer Café, Infusion and the Market at Dixie. It will stay open until 11 p.m., an hour later than the Trailblazer Café, and Brooks’ Stop will sell hamburgers, pizza, snacks, Starbucks and more.
Construction in St. George is a busy market, which made it difficult to find contractors who were willing to work on such a small project, Ruesch said. The construction process also required specific contractors because it was a specialty project needing kitchen and fire safety equipment, said Jon Gibb, director of facility planning and construction.
“It wasn’t just ‘tear out some walls and build some new walls,’” Gibb said. “It was specialty plumbing, electrical and cooking equipment that required a unique set of skills, and we had to hire specialty contractors to do that work.”
Once construction is complete, dining services will be given a few weeks between fall and spring semester to set up kitchen equipment and prepare to open.
What to expect from Brooks’ Stop
The old housing office has been completely renovated. Everything inside was torn out and rebuilt, Gibb said. The mail desk will be replaced by hot food service, a Starbucks counter will take the place of the resident manager’s office, and shelves and freezers will line the wall where the computers used to sit. A new, modern design patterned after Campus View Suites will welcome students, Ruesch said.
“Our biggest focus is to [make dining services] more accessible to students who are living [in that corner of campus],” said Martin Peterson, director of dining services. “[Those who] have kitchens and those who don’t have kitchens can come, and they can get a full meal later on in the day.”
The idea is to meet and fulfill the household needs of students as well, said Zach Gates, assistant director of dining services.
“It won’t be like the Market; it will be better than the Market,” Gibb said. “Our intent was when we became a university, we had to start transitioning from a commuter campus to a residential campus.”
Brooks’ Stop will feature indoor as well as outdoor patio seating, which lends to the active, outdoor lifestyle of DSU.
“This will just help promote the outdoor activity that Dixie State is wonderful at providing,” Gibb said.
With its location adjacent to the volleyball courts, Ruesch’s hope is that Brooks’ Stop will become a hangout spot for students.
“It’ll be a lot different from the other food venues on campus,” Ruesch said. “We’re trying to create more of a place over there by student housing that the students can even hang out at, not just go there and grab something to eat.”
The future of campus housing
The addition of Brooks’ Stop is pointing to an increase in on-campus housing, Ruesch said.
She said the next phase of housing is to build another Campus View Suites building where Shiloh Hall currently sits. However, no new housing projects are being started until the off-campus housing complexes surrounding DSU are completed, which should be about three to four years out.
Ruesch said the master plan includes adding three new Campus View Suites buildings, a total of four altogether.