T-Dex Temporary Dining Facility, Colorado State University

CSU took charge of the construction of a temporary dining facility.

The location is open from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. every day. Lategan says one of the major reasons the department didn't go with a food truck for a temporary dining facility was the volume they expected to do out of the space.

"Right now our numbers are approaching 1,000 covers a day and we think that number will end up somewhere between 2,000 and 3,000 a day," Lategan says. "It just wouldn't have been practical to do that kind of volume out of a food truck with a tiny little grill. It’s becomes a good late-night hang out for students."

Lategan says the name came from a student idea based on an express location that was in the now-closed dining hall.

"We had an express unit in Durrel, which is the name of the dining center that is closed, that students had nicknamed the Dex Express. So we started marketing it as Dex. When we asked the students for ideas for a name for this facility, a student came up with T-Dex since it is our temporary Dex Express. That gave us a concept, so we've been using dinosaurs in our marketing." 

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
bolognese sauce

We’re trying to bring scratch cooking to all the elementary schools, but we’re taking it dish by dish. Right now, we satellite a lot of the dishes out. This month we made a Bolognese from scratch, and went to each of the schools to talk to them about the process and see if they could implement it. It helps us find out the hurdles and what they are going to need to make it work.

Ideas and Innovation
rolling silverware

Ensuring that employees regularly complete the busywork missing from their daily checklist can be a challenge, but these tasks often help an operation run efficiently with fewer unexpected costs. At Methodist University Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., Regional Executive Chef Dustin Cochran has found a solution to ensure his walk-in coolers always have a clean vent. Cochran starts with a thorough cleaning of the vent, then slips a hairnet over it to catch the dust. Instead of getting employees to deep clean the vents, they need only replace the hairnet.

Ideas and Innovation
chicken and waffles

Our elementary menu is currently riding the breakfast-anytime advertising trend by offering Breakfast for Lunch every Tuesday. It ranks as our highest participation, and it was a great way for us to introduce chicken and waffles inspired by an IHOP dish.

Ideas and Innovation
dress code geeks

Team uniforms are a way we encourage fun. I tell the mangers that every person on your team needs to look like a member of your team, but they can decide together what they want to wear. When the students see a cafeteria person that is matching and having fun with their outfits, they relate to those people better. We don’t want them to look stiff and stuffy.

FSD Resources