The Daily Northwestern

Frontera closed, new retail dining options to come

Frontera Fresco in Norris University Center. The restaurant closed its doors last Friday as the University prepares for a food provider transition.

Daily file photo by Alexa Santos

Frontera Fresco in Norris University Center. The restaurant closed its doors last Friday as the University prepares for a food provider transition.

Alan Perez, Assistant Campus Editor

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Frontera Fresco served its final meal to the Northwestern community last Friday as dining services prepares for an upcoming transition to a new food service provider.

The Mexican-inspired restaurant will not have its contract renewed as Compass Group North America takes over the University’s dining in the fall. The contract is set to expire June 30, though Frontera typically closes for the summer around finals week.

Aaron Wagner, Sodexo’s district manager for NU, said the closing of Frontera was a result of the switch to Compass, which is not planning on a partnership with the restaurant.

“We’re working to transfer over Compass in a responsible and efficient way,” Wagner said, “to make sure that everyone transitions well, that service continues on, and that the students and University only benefit from of this.”

Meredith Bracken, a Chartwells spokeswoman, said the company is “offering employment opportunities to all of the incumbent dining associates.”

The news comes as the University prepares to overhaul its dining options with Compass, which will replace Sodexo and Aramark, NU’s two current providers. Chartwells Higher Education and Bon Appétit will assume control of dining halls and Norris University Center’s retail dining.

Jim Roberts, senior executive director for division services in the Student Affairs office, said Compass is looking to provide food options with attractive price options.

“Compass is really committed to — in all their retail concepts — having multiple price points so that it is accessible for students who have less expendable money,” said Roberts, who is overseeing the transition.

Reached by email, a Compass spokesperson said details of its new food options will be available soon. Roberts said several changes are expected in Norris and at least one other retail dining change on campus.

Jeremy Schenk, executive director of Norris, said he appreciates Frontera’s contributions to the NU community over the past five years.

“The partnership has been fantastic,” he said. “They’ve been a great asset in Norris and on our campus. We’ve appreciated the level of service that they brought to Northwestern.”

Julia Esparza contributed reporting.

Email: aperez@u.northwestern.edu
Twitter: @_perezalan_

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