Green Dining Center Renovation Complete at Colorado State University

Carpeting made from plastic bottles, bits of recycled glass in the countertops, and serving stations finished with materials made from wheat straw and sunflower hulls are just a few of the sustainable features in the newly renovated dining center at CSU’s Braiden Hall.

The $3.8 million renovation, which began last spring to update the interior and meet demand for more seating in the popular central campus dining center, opened to students on January 19. Two minor renovations to Braiden were completed in early 2000 until a major initiative could be undertaken. This major renovation to the dining center and kitchen includes all new made-to-order food venues, 100 new seats, all new kitchen hoods, equipment, freezers, coolers and a new dishroom with pulper to compost food waste.

Colorful flooring throughout the dining center is made from 76 percent agricultural residues including pine resin, wood flower, jute, limestone and linseed oil from the flax plant. The carpeting is made from recycled plastic bottles.

The serving stations are covered with recycled aluminum and rapidly renewable agricultural products that are a bio-friendly alternative to hard woods. The countertops and wall tiles in the renovated dining center contain recycled glass. Some of the walls in the dining center are made from cork, a renewable resource that can be harvested every nine to ten years without killing the harvested tree.

Online sandwich ordering will be added to the dining center menu in the coming weeks. The new service, called RamWich, will allow students to place a custom order online and choose a pick-up time that fits their class schedule.

"We recognize that students, faculty, and staff have a choice to dine with us," said Jim Dolak, executive director of Housing and Dining Services. "We are working hard to provide the campus community with dining venues that meet their expectations and are also environmentally-friendly."

The Braiden Dining Center renovation is the third major construction project to update dining centers on campus. Corbett Dining Center was renovated in 2005 and the Ram’s Horn Dining Center, located at the Academic Village, opened in 2008.