Nine Ways COVID-19 Will Change Eating and Dining at BU This Fall
What’s open, what’s not, and what precautions you need to be aware of to eat
As they say, we’ve all gotta eat. With COVID-19 demanding safety precautions on campus, what’s a hungry Terrier to do?
Don’t worry. BU Dining Services has poured planning and staff safety training into preparing safe experiences for students in dining rooms at Warren Towers, West Campus, Marciano Commons, and Fresh Fuel at Granby Commons (all now open). Safety protocols also apply to food retail sites, including two new dining choices: CRBC and Greens & Grains at the George Sherman Union, both scheduled to open Wednesday, September 2.
This video primer will brief you on the safety procedures. Here are nine points to keep in mind.
Beginning September 2, breakfast will be served from 7 to 10 am, lunch from 11 am to 3 pm, and dinner from 5 to 9 pm. Before the pandemic, most dining rooms were open continuously, without closures between meals. “The off-peak closures will allow for more frequent deep cleaning and sanitizing of spaces, hopefully without compromising a student’s schedule,” says James Boushka, Dining Services marketing director.
Moreover, starting September 1, he says, “seating will be limited and is based on occupancy guidelines set forth by public health officials.”
“Restaurants and cafes are fully integrated with Grubhub Campus Dining,” Boushka says, which offers a mobile app enabling takeout at all campus restaurants and cafes. “All students, staff, faculty, and BU campus community members will need to utilize the mobile app in advance of placing and picking up food and beverage orders.” Notifications are sent when your food is ready, and clearly marked mobile order pick-up signs have been put in each dining area for customers to easily pick up their meals. Convenience or Dining Points may be used to buy your meals.
For those on University meal plans, Rhetty to Go is another contact-less ordering option.
“Creating a more contact-less transaction propelled these digital experiences to the forefront,” says Boushka, although both these services predate the pandemic. “For instance, customers will not be able to approach a restaurant attendant, place an order in store, and congregate while waiting for their food. Our goal was to create an experience that fosters physical distancing without sacrificing the quality or freshness of food.”
Starting September 2, all GSU restaurants except for The Market will offer food for pickup through Grubhub. The Market’s menu will be available during the fall through Open Kitchen at 775 Commonwealth Ave., also opening September 2.
The halls have been marked with traffic directional pathways and six-foot distancing markers. Masks or face coverings are mandatory in all dining areas except when you’re eating or drinking. And diners are asked to use the contact-free hand sanitizers around dining areas for frequent handwashing.
Frequently touched surfaces, such as salad bar tongs, are gone, and personal-use cups and mugs are not allowed. Dining Services associates can help you customize your meal—just ask one of them for what you’d like.
Dunkin’ at Buick Street Market, Basho Express at Warren Towers, and Domino’s Pizza are currently open. Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers is open for takeout only. Starbucks locations at Warren Towers and the Hotel Commonwealth are open and accept BU Dining Points. Breadwinners at the Questrom School of Business opened August 31, and starting September 2, you can pay Domino’s Pizza with Dining Points on delivery of your order, as well as order Grubhub pickup at Einstein Brothers Bagels (College of Arts & Sciences building basement).
Bay State Underground in the Marciano Commons basement, Fuller’s BU Pub, Charles River Bread Co. at Buick Street Market, Healthy Blends, and the School of Law Café will not open this semester.