Barnes & Noble College Bookstores, Inc., manager of major academic bookstores and college shops, has been chosen by the University to be the anchor tenant at 65-77 Broadway when the Yale Co-op's lease comes to an end next summer.
In announcing the decision, University Vice President and Secretary Linda Lorimer said, "Barnes & Noble offered to expand dramatically the book section of the store, to increase the number of periodicals, to stay open nights and to give greater discounts to the Yale community. Barnes & Noble will also continue to stock a broad range of merchandise for students' daily needs as well as open a cafe."
Barnes & Noble College Bookstores, Inc. -- which is a privately held sister company of the Barnes & Noble that runs superstores nationwide -- is the country's leading operator of college and university bookstores, serving approximately 230 institutions of higher education. "We were impressed by Barnes & Noble's commitment to working with major universities in the years ahead," said Secretary Lorimer. "We concluded that the Broadway project and the Yale community would be best served over the next 15 years with Barnes & Noble." Barnes & Noble has recently assumed responsibility for the Harvard Coop and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Coop, and is collaborating with the University of Pennsylvania to build an academic superstore. The company also manages the college bookstores for Johns Hopkins and Columbia universities and the Universities of of Chicago and Michigan, among others.
J. Alan Kahn, Barnes & Noble's chief executive officer, said: "We are tremendously proud to be chosen for this important and prestigious responsibility. A campus bookstore is an essential part of a university community, and even more so for Yale, which is also inextricably a part of New Haven. We will use all our expertise and experience to make the new Yale Bookstore the finest bookstore in the country."
More trade books
The new store will provide a 50 percent increase in the number of trade books available for sale. Barnes & Noble has also made major commitments to Yale about stocking university press books. The company also agreed that the current array of foreign books and monographs will be continued, and that the number of periodical titles will double. In addition, Barnes & Noble agreed to carry the wide array of merchandise that students need for their dorm rooms and daily life. Barnes & Noble has committed $1.5 million to the interior renovation of the Broadway space, and the University will realize an increased economic return from the property.
Barnes & Noble is also making discounts available to the Yale community: Faculty will continue to receive the 15 percent discount for all departmental and research accounts. In addition, faculty and staff members with a valid Yale I.D. will receive, on purchases over $5, a 10 percent discount on all books not already discounted, and 10 percent off on merchandise for purchases over $5 -- e.g., a 10 percent discount from the publisher's price would be given to a Penguin edition of a novel at the checkout register or a 10 percent discount would be offered on the purchase for other merchandise-- . Students will receive a 5 percent discount for hard cover textbooks purchased during the shopping period each semester. All shoppers -- both public and University affiliates --will receive a 30 percent discount on New York Times bestsellers, and 10 percent off on most hardcover trade books.
Cafe open evenings
"A real attraction of Barnes & Noble's proposal was their willingness to stay open at night," said Rusty Tilney, director of University Properties. "Their agreement to stay open six evenings a week for the first two years of their lease gives us the opportunity to build a base of shoppers and diners to use Broadway in the evening; contribute significantly to the vibrancy of the shopping district; and improve the general safety of the neighborhood. The Co-op was only willing to make a commitment to stay open on a trial period for four months. We didn't think that that was long enough to build a base of evening activity in the area. In addition, Barnes & Noble will create a cafe within the store which has proven to be a very popular gathering place in the evenings elsewhere."
The decision by Yale followed a six-month selection process in which representatives of the Provost's and Secretary's offices, faculty and alumni experts in real estate, participated. A number of deans and faculty were consulted about their assessment of the needs for servicing textbook and scholarly needs, and student leaders were informed earlier this fall about the long-term goals for the revitalization of the Broadway area, and told that the releasing of the Co-op space was under consideration.
Diana E.E. Kleiner, deputy provost and former chair of the department of classics, who also interviewed Barnes & Noble representatives, said: "The Barnes & Noble commitments make an outstanding academic bookstore a real possibility. A livelier Broadway would enhance the daily lives of members of the Yale community and would also be a help in recruiting individuals to Yale. We cannot always be satisfied with the status quo."
Bruce Alexander, who is a member of the Yale Corporation's Building and Grounds Committee and the founding chair of the University's Urban Affairs Committee, also participated in the process. Mr. Alexander recently retired as senior vice president of The Rouse Company, which was responsible for major urban revitalization projects such as Baltimore's Inner Harbor and Faneuil Hall in Boston. Mr. Alexander said, "Yale deserves a first-class retail environment. Our plan is to create a lively shopping district to serve the community night and day. We are seeking the right blend of a few select national merchants and many more with a local flavor, and attracting Barnes & Noble College Bookstores to Broadway is an important milestone in this process."
65-77 Broadway has been only one of seven sites around the campus which has housed the Yale Co-op during its history. "We look forward to working with the Yale Co-op wherever they relocate," said Secretary Lorimer.
Barnes & Noble will begin operations on Broadway in late summer of this year.