The Boston University Barnes and Noble officially opened the doors of its new West Campus location Monday, three days after the bookstore’s Kenmore Square location closed in the wake of a 2016 deal BU made to sell its properties at the eastern edge of campus.
The new store has two larger floors instead of the five smaller ones in the old Kenmore location. The first floor features some BU clothing and merchandise for purchase but largely houses textbooks. The second floor holds mainly BU merchandise.
Unlike at the Kenmore location, the new Barnes and Noble does not have a Starbucks inside. The store is sparsely furnished, with scenes from around campus up on the walls. The floor plan is open besides a staircase in the middle of the store leading to the second floor.
Stephen Turco, the store’s general manager, said this new location at 910 Commonwealth Ave. is permanent. He said he is very happy with the new layout.
“I think it’s great — it’s fun,” Turco said. “It’s got a little bit of an industrial look to it, a little bit more modern, gives us a better opportunity to present the merchandise that we sell in a different way.”
While the bookstore’s official opening took place Monday, the store was able to open two days ahead of schedule, he said.
“We closed Wednesday at 5, and we opened up at 1 o’clock on Saturday,” Turco said. “The move was much quicker than we had anticipated.”
Turco said the new store will have the same hours as the old location and will offer mostly the same selection of items — though not every item from the old store was brought west.
“There were some product lines and categories that we didn’t bring with us,” he said. “We brought all the stuff that our customers buy from us.”
BU spokesperson Colin Riley said the university is pleased with the new location because it’s close to many students who live in West, an area that is still frequented by students who live on other parts of campus.
“Many of them come up to the FitRec center, or have classes this way, or attend events or head off-campus in this direction,” Riley said. “So it’s a good location.”
Riley said he encouraged students to visit the new location.
“I hope they’re pleased with the fact that they’re not going down five floors with their textbooks,” he said.
Grace Berg, a sophomore in the College of Communication who lives in East Campus, said she was unhappy with the bookstore’s new location in West and that the move would definitely affect how often she visits the bookstore.
“I like the new store, I think it’s nice — but I live in Danielsen,” Berg said. “The other one was really close to me, and now it’s really far away. I wish if they were moving it, they would have moved it somewhere more in the middle of campus.”
Hailey Lee, a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences, also said the new location would cause her to visit the bookstore less often.
“I’m living in Towers, so I was like, ‘Oh, that’s unfortunate,’” Lee said. “I used to visit the Starbucks in the bookstore or buy hoodies and other stuff from there.”
Michael Nejaime, a freshman in the Questrom School of Business, said he thinks the new location is much more convenient for him and a lot of students.
“It’s a convenient place for students, I guess, it’s a good move,” Nejaime said. “I will be there more often, for sure.”
Nejaime added he thinks the move out of Kenmore is causing BU to lose its foothold in the square.
“BU’s all about being in Boston and everything,” Nejaime said. “Kenmore is really a gateway into the middle of the city.”