Organisation - March 24, 2011

Living and shopping on campus

The latest fashionable phrase: Wageningen Univercity. The campus and town centre declare their love for each other.

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Popping into the hairdressers' between two lectures, doing some quick grocery shopping in the AH-To Go and then dropping into the temping agency. Until now, students (and staff) have had to leave campus for such things, but that will soon change. There are no longer any objections of principle to small-scale catering establishments and retail outlets on campus.
That became obvious during an information evening held at the Town Hall in mid-March to discuss a new retail policy paper. The local business people made it clear that they no longer reject the idea of living and shopping on campus.  'We are convinced that small-scale facilities on campus are necessary', said leading businessman Oeds de Kroon, marking the new Wageningen Spring. 'A travel agency, a coffee shop, a bookstore, that kind of thing.' And even though he would 'prefer not to see any catering establishments' on campus, it does seem as though the die has been cast. That is nothing less than a revolution. Up to now, business people in particular have been strongly opposed to developments that might be at the expense of the town centre. 
'We're considering functions that have a logical fit with teaching and research and a place for companies to meet the University', said spokesman Ab Groen, explaining the wishes of Wageningen UR. 'A cafe serving lunches, or a coffee shop for example, a small supermarket, a hairdressers' or a guesthouse.' Groen emphasised that it is not the intention to keep students away from the town centre. On the contrary. 'The campus is for working, the town centre is for shopping and going out in the evening'.

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