New addition to the Caf completed

The new Caf patio dubbed the “Sky Deck” makes its debut.


John Buchanan

John Buchanan/THE CHIMES

Dayna Drum, Writer

Junior Tyler Voss (Left), Sophomore Caleb Adams (Right), Sophomore Jacob Brisbane and Phil Jonhston (facing away) enjoy a meal together on the new Sky Deck. | John Buchanan/THE CHIMES

The new addition to the Caf officially opened to students on April 23 after multiple delays and months of construction that began last semester. The Sky Deck was built to alleviate some of the congestion students have experienced during peak meal hours, and so far is doing just that, according to Pamela Montoya, Caf manager.

“We have a hundred extra seats so it gives the students more room to stay here instead of having to take their food to go,” Montoya said.

The doors to the Sky Deck opened on April 23 and an official ribbon cutting ceremony was supposed to take place, but it was cancelled due to logistical reasons, according to Jenna Bartlo, university communications and marketing media relations specialist. Instead, students were notified of the opening with signs on the Caf’s front doors.

Deck Received Well by Students

In the past week, the new section has been flocked by students wanting to be among the first to break in the eating spot. The Sky Deck has been met with positive feedback from students so far.

“I definitely feel like it’s opened up space and that there is more often tables,” said Angela Nicholson, a sophomore biology major.

Not only does the space offer a bit more breathing room, but students also enjoy the atmosphere of the enclosed outdoor area.

“It’s got a nice indoor feel but still outdoor which is kind of cool,” said Harry Scannell, a junior music major.

The heated covered patio offers outdoor seating as an option even when the weather is rainy or cold, which is one of the biggest issues with the other patio seating.

“When it starts raining again, we’ll actually be able to sit outside while it rains, it will be nice with heaters,” said Ryan Keene, senior music major.

For some the covered patio not only offers sanctuary from the weather, but from other elements as well.

“We don’t have those trees … the pollen always falls in your food. I like to sit outside but I won’t sit over there because of that problem,” said Lindsay Hottendorf, sophomore communications science and disorders major.

Completed under budget 

The Sky Deck project was roughly estimated to cost $700,000, as mentioned in a previous Chimes article. However the project was able to be completed below budget, about $648,000, said Brian Phillips, senior director of operations in facilities services.

This total does not include the Sky Deck’s new furniture or the landscaping. The landscaping is still underway and is expected to cost $3,500, according to Phillips. The furniture, which is not classified as a construction expense, cost $32,750, said Don Sims, senior director of auxiliary services.

Funding for the Sky Deck came out of the Auxiliary Services budget, which is funded from various operations on campus like bookstore sales, conferences, housing and meal plans, not student tuition.

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