The newly renovated Hampshire Dining Commons will be recognized with a grand re-opening celebration and ribbon cutting ceremony this Tuesday, hosted by the University of Massachusetts Dining Services.
The ribbon cutting will take place in the Southwest Residential Area at 6:30 p.m., with three guest chefs there to help provide food for the celebration. Chef Mai Pham of Sacramento, Calif., will be preparing South East Asian style dishes; Chef Jehangir Mehta of New York will be cooking Indian cuisine; and Chef Bruno Wehren of Orlando, Fla., will be serving meals with a Mediterranean flare.
About 3,500 students are expected to attend the grand re-opening, which marks the end of a two year, $15.5 million project to renovate the 46,000 square foot facility, originally constructed in 1966.
Besides refurbishments, Director of Auxiliary Enterprises Ken Toong added that the goal of the refurbishment project is to make Hampshire one of the healthiest dining commons in America.
“This can be accomplished by serving minimally processed foods and more plant-based items at peak season, less red meat, more sustainable seafood and healthier oils, fats and beverages,” Toong said in a UMass press release.
The newly renovated space is expected to reduce student traffic at Berkshire Dining Commons and give the 1,500 students living in the new Commonwealth Honors College dorms more dining options.
Toong added that there is no competition between the dining halls. He said in the release that Hampshire and Berkshire should complement rather than compete with each other and strive to provide students in the Southwest Residential Area with a more varied and exciting eating experience.
Jaclyn Bryson can be reached at [email protected]