BY JOHN POHL
Construction on Marletto’s Marketplace, the largest restaurant on Webster University’s main campus, is being completed after several months of delays. Among the improvements made to the eatery were new hallways, a pathway from Loretto Hall and Webster Hall, new windows and doors and a newly landscaped courtyard.
“We had to wait for bricks, siding and particularly the doors to come in,” said Associate Vice President of Budget and Planning Dan Hitchell. “Apparently with the slow economy there is a supply chain problem. We had to go back to the architect to make some changes and get bricks that would match.”
The supply companies Webster has been ordering from only keep small quantities of materials, and are now keeping the bare minimum in stock. Staffs have been cut and, in many, cases only custom-made products are being produced.
“Our biggest problem came with Budget Glass, who makes our doors,” Hitchell said. “They were running a skeleton crew so it made it difficult to get what we needed. We had trouble getting other materials as well.”
Pinnacle Construction was hired to complete the renovation. Hitchell said he does not hold them responsible for the delays. Pinnacle has worked on a number of construction projects for Webster and the university has been satisfied with their work.
The renovation project created a defined pathway between Loretto Hall and the academic facilities in Webster Hall. The gravel in the courtyard was replaced with concrete and a tree was planted. New patio furniture is being added later.
“The indoor bridge is nice,” said junior public relations student Tom Nestor. “It covers a pathway from Webster Hall to Loretto Hall so you don’t have to go outside.”
Hitchell said he’ll meet with Ted Hoef soon to decide if new indoor furniture is necessary. If so, the furniture will be added during the summer.
Although Marletto’s is now more accessible and the ascetic work is complete, seating space has been reduced by 12 tables.
“I don’t think the smaller space will be a problem,” Hitchell said. “We will put in new tables and chairs in the patio, so on a nice fall day students can sit out there. The first week of school in the fall will be busy until students start their classes. After that there will be more places to sit.”
Nestor said the patio will get plenty of use when the weather breaks.
“Once the weather gets better, and they add furniture in the courtyard, I can absolutely see students sitting out there,” Nestor said. “Everything is so professional.”
The construction at Marletto’s is nearly finished — only a few tasks remain.
“We are still working on punch lists,” said David Stone, director of facility planning. “We have seats to order and a few nicks on the wall to fix.”