Quiznos, a nationwide sandwich shop, filed for bankruptcy in late February. Since then, thousands of their stores throughout the U.S. have closed their doors, but the location at the UofA is expected to remain open, the marketing director for Chartwells said.
“We do not plan to close this one as it is one of students’ most favorite places to eat,” said Kim Johnson, marketing director for Chartwells. “They vote everyday by spending their money and flex dollars there.”
The plan is to continue to keep the store operating as long as Quiznos continues to support it, but there are still improvements to be made, Johnson said.
“We are, however, running a retail preference survey that will help us determine concepts that could be added to campus as early as next fall,” she said.
Junior Hayley Holmes said she thinks the brand is already out of business, and would like to see more healthier options brought to the university.
“Some other sort of sandwich place or other sort of healthy option besides Slims and Brough,” Holmes said.
As a Texas native, Holmes said she would like to see a little bit of home around campus.
“I wouldn’t mind for the popular Texas chains, like Whataburger, to come here because it makes me feel a little closer to home,” she said.
Students are encouraged to take this survey and will be given coupons for their time.
This survey helps determine future decisions on bringing other chain restaurants to campus, Johnson said.
While stores around the country close, Chartwells officials are still watching the Quiznos bankruptcy and store closings develop, Johnson said.
If the franchise closed its doors completely, the university would have to find a replacement, Johnson said. Though it’s uncertain if the replacement would offer the same type of food, customer insight would help narrow down the decision.
However, university officials takes other factors into consideration when it comes to opening a new franchise on campus.
“We look at fees, labor and food cost and equipment and capex,” Johnson said. “In all of that, we add any other constraints like speed of service and ability to match prices to the street franchise.”
Holmes said that she thinks it’s a great idea for the university to take steps to bring in chains that students love.
“Anything new is refreshing in my opinion,” Holmes said. “I honestly love that popular restaurant chains are making their way here.”
While most students think that prices are higher at campus franchises, the prices are the same, Johnson said.
“In fact, national brand franchise prices such as Burger King or Chick-fil-A are exactly the same as at the store on MLK across the street from campus,” she said.