Blue Chip will be moving into the old Pie R Squared location, with the current Blue Chip location replaced by new food businesses.
According to AMS President Eshana Bhangu, the move was motivated by the AMS wanting to maximize the large, unused space in Pie R Squared, and by students wanting more seated dining and study space in the Nest.
“Hopefully with this move… we can have a more sit down cafe-like presence for Blue Chip,” Bhangu said.
Bhangu also said the move is intended to enhance AMS business performance and address the student society's projected $1.25 million deficit. Before the pandemic, AMS businesses brought in upwards of $1 million in annual revenue. This has significantly decreased, with a projected $372,188 in business revenue for 2022/23.
Blue Chip’s current location will be replaced by two businesses. The first will be a Mediterranean restaurant, while the other business is still in its preliminary stages, and will go through a similar survey and polling process as the Mediterranean restaurant.
“From a capital planning perspective, there’s enough space that we can offer a little more than just one cuisine… if we can offer more, we’d love to do that,” said Bhangu.
According to Bhangu, there are no exact dates for the move yet, but it will likely be in term two, with the new businesses opening at the start of the next academic year.
She also said that Blue Chip Express will continue to run during the move and remain there afterwards, but the original Blue Chip will have to close throughout the process.
In terms of costs, Bhangu said that they were “still looking at initial estimates” but will go through council to approve the funding. The funding will likely come from the capital projects fund.
“We're very excited for this move … [and] I can’t wait for students to use that cafe space,” said Bhangu.