Among the many changes at APSU, the Ann Ross Bookstore has moved locations.
The new store, located on the corner of College and Fourth street, offers the same merchandise and atmosphere of the old store. However, the store includes more seating and a coffee shop.
Shonte Cadwallader, bookstore manager says the new location gives the town and the school a unique opportunity to blend together.
“The move provides the [bookstore], operated by Barnes and Noble, a much better retail presence for both the campus community and the public. This also allow[s] for a more optimal retail layout, a café that offers a variety of food and Starbucks drinks, and a better parking situation for both visitors and students. The building has additional space that is still being planned for other amenities,” Cadwallader said in an email interview.
The new location has already had an interesting opening with COVID.
“While this is certainly a unique time to be opening a new store location, we are well prepared to serve the APSU campus community for the upcoming semester. Our top priority has been ensuring that both customers and employees feel comfortable in our store given the current environment,” Cadwallader said. “When students come by, they will now see a number of safety measures that have been put in place, such as sneeze guards at the registers and changes in the flow of store traffic to promote social distancing. As with campus policy, [customers] are required to wear a mask when in the store and social distancing is mandatory.”
She also adds that the new location will include various new items aside from APSU merchandise, such as seating areas in the new cafe complete with charging stations. There is also a general reading area with new releases, bargain books, fiction, entertainment, and more.
“The B&N Café is one of the most significant changes for the new location,” Cadwallader said. “The layout at this location was planned for a more customer friendly experience with a specific online order pickup area.”
COVID restrictions has caused more customers to utilize online ordering.
“We’ve definitely seen an increase in students taking advantage of our website to order their materials,” Cadwaller said. “We encourage students to choose the shopping experience that works best for them – whether that’s in-store, online or ordering online and picking up in-store.”
The store will still include student and faculty discounts, along with weekly promotions online and in the store.
“When I entered the bookstore [I saw that] it was pretty spacious. The coffee was easy to access, and it had really great blueberry smoothies,” Leslie James, sophomore, said. “Everything in the store was spaced out nicely and easy to locate.”