Bookstore to undergo renovation

The TCU Bookstore will undergo a makeover in February to accommodate student demand that has earned it a spot in the top-five college Barnes & Noble bookstores in the nation, said the bookstore’s general manager.Barnes & Noble will add 8,000 retail square feet to the TCU bookstore toward the end of February, said Llisa Lewis, the general manager.

Stan Frank, the marketing director for Barnes & Noble, said the company tries to renovate college bookstores every three to five years but said that the more business a store does, the more attention the store gets.

Chancellor Victor Boschini said he does not know the annual revenue of the bookstore, but said his “hunch would be that TCU’s sales are pretty high because Barnes & Noble is willing to invest in TCU in terms of the expansion.”

Lewis said that when the expansion is complete, students will be served by a 20,000-square-foot bookstore that will feature a second-floor loft area built specifically for textbooks.

Lewis said the bookstore is being renovated to provide students with a more comfortable bookstore but may come at a large price.

Retail and textbooks will be moved into several trailers in the bookstore parking lot on Berry Street until construction is complete, Lewis said.

Boschini said students should expect an inconvenience due to renovations as soon as book sales slow down early in the spring semester.

“Students will be affected because they will be using the bookstore during a period when it will be especially crowded and full of construction,” Boschini said.

Lewis said the inconvenience will be worth it.

Students can expect more seating area in the cafe, new lounge areas for studying and a redesigned Lancome counter, she said.

Also, a handicap-accessible elevator and a stairway will give students, faculty and alumni access to the second floor.

Lewis said focus groups were conducted to find out what students and alumni would like to see in the bookstore.

The No. 1 demand among students is a better selection of retail so they can do all of their shopping in one stop, Lewis said.

Students also want things departmentalized, Lewis said.

“They don’t want to go through the alumni section and the children’s section to get to the student section,” she said. “We hope to have individual retail areas for sports, children, alumni and students.

In response to students’ requests, Lewis said, she hopes to expand the technology department and the art supply selection.

The appearance of the bookstore will not be completely changed, but the south entrance will be remodeled to mirror the Berry Street entrance.