Students await new hub in lieu of Starbucks
Story by Emily Sadecki
Photo by Baron Cao
Known as a hub for Drake students studying, picking up their daily dose of caffeine and meeting up with friends, the Starbucks location at 1315 31st Street in Des Moines at West Village closed its doors permanently on July 12, 2013.
Dannie Crozier, Sodexo general manager, said that the Drake West Village Starbucks closed “for a variety of business reasons.”
The Drake West Village Starbucks licensed store was managed separately from the rest of the dining services at Drake. Sodexo had leased the space for the store from a realty company that will make all decisions about how the space is used in the future.
“Students and the Drake community can still enjoy a cup of brewed Starbucks coffee on campus at both the Cowles Coffee Shop in the Cowles Library and the Olmsted Coffee Shop in the Olmsted Center,” Crozier said.
Sunsation Spa resides in the space right next to the property that Starbucks used to occupy.
Manager Ashley Roney said, “Starbucks was a great neighbor, and we were very sorry to see them close. We are excited to meet our new neighbors and hope we can build as strong of a relationship with them as we were lucky to have with the Starbucks team.”
Many students were also sad to see Starbucks go.
Soon after the June 18 announcement that Starbucks would be close its doors, a petition surfaced, garnering over 200 signatures.
Junior Tara Williams just achieved gold-member Starbucks status and has spent a lot of time over the years studying and catching up with friends at the Drake West Village location.
“I think it is nice to have a coffee place close to campus,” Williams said, “especially for people who live off-campus because buying flex dollars can be very inconvenient.”
A Drake Law student, Veronica Quesada, will miss the Starbucks.
“I liked what it was,” Quesada said, “I liked that I could go and get a snack if I only had limited time.”
Junior Jim Orris suggested on the Student Senate Facebook page that the Starbucks be replaced by a Chipotle.
He has concerns, though, for the business that does eventually go into that space.
“If you can’t keep a Starbucks open literally underneath where college kids sleep, you’re going to run into some issues regardless of who replaces it,” Orris said.
First-year students hope to see the space be used for a new dining hub.
Jared Lancaster said, “I would like to see a more reasonable eating venue.”
First-year Annemarie McCoy said she would like to see it used as a place for students to “chat and study.”
She suggested putting in a different coffee shop.
Sophomore Tori Adams would like to see “another café of some kind that is closer to campus.”
For the on-campus locations, it may mean more business.
Senior Kening Lee, an employee at the café in the library, said that in the next couple of weeks they may see an increase in business compared to previous years with the closing of the Drake West Village location.