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Wells Commons was formerly a food court-style retail food service area and bakery that had been transformed into an “all you can eat” facility with more extensive use of dishes and utensils.  This transformation created a strain on the small, existing dish room, which was not designed to meet the increased usage.  A solution was needed to address the increased quantity of washable wares and the management of removing soiled dishes and utensils from the dining room areas.  The project goal was to provide an adequately sized dish room with state-of-the-art equipment to support the current and future growth needs of the facility.   

Interior renovations of Wells Commons included repurposing the existing convenience store and replacing it with an appropriately sized dish room, maintaining the existing walk-in coolers, reworking the coffee station into a full beverage station, expanding the breakfast bar area, and providing a food service management office. 

The new dish room consists of a pass-thru drop off area onto a trayless accumulator. The dish room side of the accumulator has a soiled wares conveyor/soiled dish table and scraping trough.  The soiled wares are scraped, stacked and sent to the flight-type dishwasher by way of the soiled wares conveyor.  The scraping trough feeds into a troughveyor and is pumped into a food waste elimination system that reduces all organic food waste to gray water within 24 hours. The existing coffee station was removed and a new beverage closet was constructed to support a beverage station that includes soda, milk, juice, and coffee offerings.   A new 1,000-pound ice machine with automatic ice transport to the beverage dispenser is located in the utility closet located behind the beverage counter.   The closet also provides a visual and acoustic block from the dish room activities. 

The project also included a new signage and graphics wall at the main entry, with an LCD screen which allows the food service provider to display menu and special food event information.  Oak Point Associates’ team included TJM Consulting, Inc. as a specialized Food Service Consultant.   

Client: University of Maine
  • Design of a new dish room to meet increased demand of a new food service model.
  • Reworked a coffee station into an expanded beverage closet.
  • Signage and graphics wall with both electronic and traditional messaging capabilities.