Thinking Outside the Wall
WINNER: DCH REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER, TUSCALOOSA, AL
Entry: Patio Grille & Cafe
The Big Idea: Hospital foodservice operators have a very difficult time securing capital improvement funding, so when they do, they must make the most of it. DCH Nutritional Services faced this situation when it received the go-ahead for a renovation of its main retail cafeteria. Initially, the department only wanted to bump into an adjacent outdoor patio area to get more seating space but as it explored the idea it found that taking over the entire space and enclosing it would not appreciably cost more. The result is a wonderfully modified eatery that has a beautiful skylighted dining area (the former patio space). The menu has changed from a "traditional" hospital cafeteria cycle menu to a broad "Market Fresh" type menu with most items made to order in front of the customer. (Previously, food was cooked in advance and held in food warmers, and the menu consisted of a couple of entrees, starches, and vegetables.) The new menu features a bakery with homemade cakes, pastries and breads; a deli that features paninis, wraps, subs and a feature sandwich of the week; a chefs table with a different menu and protein salad each day; a pizzeria with made to order pizza and a couple of different pastas; and a grille that features hamburgers, grilled chicken sandwiches, chicken fingers, etc, and a weekly feature sandwich.
Project Team: DCH Nutritional Services—Dexter Hancock (Director), Annie Flanagan (Manager), Gary Lane (Executive Chef), Bobby Harris, Veronica Frank, Martha Latham (Assistant Managers); Robert Lanoux of Ward, Scott, Vernon, Inc.; Harrison Construction; Deborah Roy of Interior Design Professionals
A Monumental Upgrade
WINNER MT. RUSHMORE NATIONAL MEMORIAL
Entry: Carvers Cafe/Memorial Team Ice Cream
The Big Idea: Mount Rushmore celebrates American history by honoring four of our greatest presidents. But the shadow of the past was nothing to celebrate for the visitors who had to squeeze into the cramped and outdated cafeteria and ice cream parlor that were the main foodservice outlets in the park. Long lines, uninspiring choices and extended waits were increasingly the norm, especially in the summer season. The new Carvers Cafe is a thoroughly modern scatter-style eatery that efficiently funnels customers through a multi-station servery featuring wide variety, fresh flavors and quick service. Station names are themed to reflect the park's character and mission while the food choices from concessionnaire Xanterra Parks & Resorts meet the needs of the highly diverse visitor population. The adjacent Memorial Team Ice Cream parlor has also been upgraded with a high-speed queue system, multiple points of sale, effective merchandising and a satellite kiosk on the nearby terrace to dispense quick meal choices.
Project Team: Mt. Rushmore—Gerard Baker (Park Superintendent); Al Moller of Ricca Newmark Design; The Boelter Cos.—Lenny Mazurek, Len Groschen; Jason McGimpsey of A&E Architects; Mitch Thompson of Mitch Thompson & Associates; Rick Schuelke of McCarthy Anderson; Xanterra Parks & Resorts—Steve Tedder, Timothy Stein, Russ Jobman, John Knapp, Tom Dusing, Heather Vo
A Quantum Leap in On-Campus Dining
WINNER: THE UNIVERSITY OF MASSACHUSETTS-AMHERST
Entry: Berkshire Dining Commons
The Big Idea: While campus dining at the UMass main campus in Amherst features a number of interesting and attractive retail options, the school's four residential dining halls had progressively fallen behind the times. So the school embarked on a long-term upgrade project several years ago and Berkshire is the first result, and a spectacluar sign of things to come if the other renovations are anything like it. The new Berkshire features an array of 11 open-display serving stations featuring freshly prepared food and designed with the flexibility to shift concepts without changing equipment. That flexibility allows the dining hall to produce a wide range of dishes that range from the exotic ethnic (freshly made sushi, Indian, etc.) to college student comfort (burgers, pizza). Berkshire has been a big hit on campus, generating a 75-percent increase in traffic compared tothe pre-renovated space and contributing to a bump in meal plan purchases. It has also increased pressure to get renovations done on the other dining halls in order to ease the traffic pressure on the campus's new flagship eatery.
Project Team: UMass Dining Services—Kenneth Toong (Director), Victor Keedy, Ryan Pipczynski, Tim Lane, Ashoke Ganguli (Director of Auxiliary Services), Donald Ducharme, Willie Sng; UMass Facilities & Campus Planning—Stephen Lobik, James Cahill; Livermore Edwards & Associates—Robert Livermore, Brian Amaral, Amy Van Lauwe, James Coveno; Kevin Cromwell of Cromwell Consulting, Inc.; Consigli Construction—Sean Ditto, Michael Boucher; Stuart Lesser of Joslin, Lesser & Associates; Peter Pratt of Edwards & Kelcey