A new location of the popular fast food Mexican restaurant, Taco Bell, is confirmed to be coming to 872 Commonwealth Avenue. The establishment, while unaffiliated with Boston University, will be in a location many consider to be on-campus.
The town of Brookline Planning Board held a meeting Wednesday morning to discuss “facade and blade signs and renovations to store front for Taco Bell.” There, a Taco Bell representative said construction will likely begin in late Spring.
The news first was posted on the Boston city chat forum archBOSTON.org in “The New Retail Thread,” with a post from active member, ErnieAdams, who announced the presumed location of Taco Bell Thursday.
“Taco Bell [is] coming to 872 Comm. Ave. in front of BU West,” Adams wrote. “This one will be two doors down from Chipotle.”
Word of the new location was then posted on The Black Sheep BU, a BU student-life Instagram and Twitter page. With a following of more than 4,000 users on Instagram and more than 1,000 followers on Twitter, the posts garnered much attention and led many students to ask if the location would be affiliated with BU.
However, the administration at BU has made no statement regarding the new location and, despite Brookline’s planning for the location, Taco Bell Headquarters have not officially announced their new location on Commonwealth Avenue.
Gary Gianfrancesco, president of Arconics Architecture, the firm working on the Taco Bell project, said at the meeting that there was no apparent affiliation between BU and the new Taco Bell location despite their proximity.
“To my knowledge at the moment, it’s completely unaffiliated,” Gianfrancesco said.
Colin Riley, a BU spokesperson, confirmed Gianfrancesco’s statement and emphasized that the university is unaware of the restaurant’s arrival at the moment.
“There’s nothing related to our campus,” Riley said. “I have no knowledge and no one at the university is aware of this.”
Gianfrancesco also said this specific Taco Bell location will be different than other versions of the restaurant. He characterized this location as a ‘cantina’ style of dining in addition to the fast-food style services they will provide.
“This is not a standard Taco Bell. It’s called a cantina, so there is an alcohol component,” Gianfrancesco said. “It’s basically sit-down dining with the Taco Bell menu, so the proximity to colleges is what’s gravitated us to this [location].”
Serina Gajarawala, a freshman in the College of General Studies, said she has only heard rumors regarding the Taco Bell location, but is excited for it to come to fruition.
“I have heard of [the rumors] through word of mouth,” Gajarawala said. “And I’m excited about it.”
Luisa Mesa Uruena, a sophomore in the College of Engineering, said she thinks the new restaurant will be a good addition to the area.
“Even if it’s not through BU, I think it’s still like a good thing for student life,” Mesa said. “I don’t really think it affects anyone negatively. It’s a little far if you’re in East campus, but apart from that it’s cool.”
Justin Turley, a master’s student at ENG, said the addition of Taco Bell to the selection of restaurants near BU will be a refreshing change.
“I think it’s good for variety. I mean, one of the complaints I have about the GSU is that there isn’t much variety,” Turley said. “You can only really get sandwiches or Basho, so I’m happy for that variety to come.”
Patricia Ganchozo, a junior in ENG, said while some might appreciate Taco Bell coming to campus, she would prefer a healthier alternative.
“I feel like we need more healthier choices for food instead of just junk food,” Ganchozo said. “I feel like now, even with the dining hall and the choices at the GSU, I don’t eat as well as I should be eating.”
Ellie Yeo contributed to the reporting of this article.