Reuben Jones, Broadside Correspondent

Once the home of Mason’s dining hall, Ciao Hall, Student Union Building II has since turned into a building of very little activity and few signs of life.

This is all set to change, however, with a major renovation planned for the building. The goal of the updated facility will be student activity, and with that comes a host of changes.

The second floor of SUB II, which formerly housed Ciao Hall, and is now empty, will be completely revamped.

One of the most significant changes will be the introduction of a burger restaurant called the “Original Burger Company.” The restaurant is a Sodexo concept and according to Regional District Manager of Sodexo Denise Ammaccapane, it will be “kind of like Five Guys.”

Customers can pick their toppings for their burgers from a simple menu. Each food item will be the same price and the restaurant will have some salads and chicken sandwiches, although Ammaccapane says the priority dish will be burgers.

The reason for a burger restaurant on campus comes from a survey conducted last year by dining services. From 4,400 people surveyed on what type of food they would like on campus, “the burger was loud and clear,” said Ammaccapane.

Shaliana McFarland, a senior sports management major, believes that “it’s about time they do something with it,” referring to SUB II. “It’s a good idea,” said McFarland but she emphasizes that the success of the restaurant and game room will be determined by the hours.

According to McFarland, the hours are important because the locations will need to be open during the night for students to take advantage of them.

Another major edition to the second floor of SUB II will be a brand new state of the art game room.

The game room will replace the Corner Pocket, along with the current game room inside of SUB I. According to Tom Olund, the project planner for SUB II, the game room will be “fairly extensive with added features.”

The room will offer pool, ping pong and an electronic gaming facility that will have up to 16 stations. The gaming facility and the Original Burger Company will be next to each other, allowing students to grab a bite to eat and then head over to play a game.

The gaming facility will have lounge seating giving the opportunity for students to come and relax while enjoying the numerous games.
According to Olund, the Original Burger Company will hold around 100 people, while the full capacity of the second floor of SUB II will be around 160 people.

Along with changes to the second floor of SUB II, there are additional renovations to the first floor.

While the mail room will stay as it is, all of Student Media will relocate from SUB I to the first floor of SUB II. The Student Activities center will also move to SUB II, which means Student Government and the Program Board will move from the Johnson Center, while Student Activities will relocate from SUB I.

The third floor of SUB II, which holds a ballroom and multiple meeting rooms, will not be changed.

SUB II, however, will undergo an official name change. Although the name has not been announced, a name committee has been formed through Student Activities.

The changes to SUB II will allow for a dramatic increase in space for Student Activities, including 50 cubicle areas and 75 to 100 large locker spaces.

There will be a significant area for the fraternity and sorority office and a student government suite which will provide large rooms for the Student Senate and Executive Board.

“I’m so excited, I wish it was tomorrow,” said Director of Student Activities Lauren Long. “Students are going to be floored when they see this.”

Long adds that the changes to student activities and clubs on campus will be “ripe for possibilities.”

According to Olund, the hope is for SUB II to become a main hangout spot for students on campus. With the resources of the Johnson Center and Southside close by, SUB II will be a new option for students who are looking for something to do.