Dietrick Hall renovations offer innovative dining experiences
Dietrick Hall’s first floor now features a variety of upgrades and improvements, including state-of-the-art technology, study spaces, expanded dining options, and more.
The first-floor expansion and renovation of Dietrick Hall had its soft opening on March 12.
Renovations on the first floor of the building have been ongoing, and work has been done to expand the space to provide an updated, modern feel and create a more welcoming and dynamic space for the university community to gather, study, and eat.
Originally built in 1970, Dietrick Hall has been an important fixture on the Virginia Tech campus for decades. As the campus has grown and evolved, so too has the need for an updated and expanded dining facility to serve the needs of students, faculty, and staff. With this project's completion, Dietrick Hall now has a more natural flow and is better equipped than ever to provide a wide range of services and amenities.
Dietrick Hall’s renovated and expanded first floor features a variety of upgrades and improvements, including state-of-the-art technology, study spaces, expanded dining options, and more. Over 200 additional seats have been added with the expansion along with several other amenities such as charging ports.
Executive Chef Randall Van Dyke said he is excited by how this renovation and expansion will better serve the students. “Not only will they be able to charge their phones, but they can also charge up with food and gather what they need,” said Van Dyke.
Xpress Lane has also been expanded to house more offerings and ingredients for students.
“This renovation will give students more space to congregate, meet, and study,” said Brandon Hendricks, associate director of dining. “We have so many different and unique needs on campus, this will cover all our students' needs for their entire time here. For example, the Xpress Lane will really help our students grab a quick meal or ingredients if they want to make something in their residence hall.”
Moving into a former bookstore location, Xpress Lane has been expanded to offer even more products such as fresh fruit and vegetables supplied by Homefield Farm. The larger ordering screens will provide students easier access to view all the possible options that the Dining Services team can provide. Self-service areas including a soup bar, ice cream station, and an area to make personal trail mix is included in the Xpress Lane.
The area is now the size of a basketball court, with over 5,000 square feet including a dining shop called Futurebites.
“We designed Futurebites in such a way that we would be able to put new concepts there. For example, we created a halal barbecue,” said Van Dyke, “The idea of fusing and bringing together diverse cultures in food to give our students something new from semester to semester or year to year is something we strive for.”
The exterior of the first floor is being transformed into the Quillen Spirit Plaza, an open-air space for gathering, collaboration, and celebration of school spirit. The Quillen Spirit Plaza will be inaugurated with a public dedication in the fall.
With its modern amenities and convenient location, Dietrick Hall is sure to become a hub of activity and a beloved gathering spot for years to come.
“There are going to be so many opportunities to bring the community together, it has always been about bringing cultures and communities together,” said Van Dyke.
Written by Eric Garner