New bookstore at NMSU to open Aug. 1

Workers are putting the finishing touches on the new Barnes & Noble at New Mexico State University bookstore, scheduled to open Aug. 1 (NMSU photo by Kyle Pierson)

Barnes & Noble, NMSU venture

Mark Cramer

NMSU

The new Barnes & Noble at New Mexico State University bookstore, located at University Avenue and Jordan Street, is nearing completion and will be open for business Monday, Aug. 1 – not only for the NMSU campus, but for the Las Cruces community as well. The current store, located inside Corbett Center Student Union, will permanently close at 5 p.m. July 26 to allow store staff to transfer merchandise between locations.

The new store will be housed in a 44,998 square-foot building that also will house office and other retail space, as well as the bookstore warehouse. The Barnes & Noble will occupy 30,855 square feet of retail space, including a Barnes & Noble Café that will serve Starbucks coffee and offer assorted soups, sandwiches and pastries.

In the northwest corner of the structure, 2,347 square feet of the first floor has been allocated for future retail space. In October, NMSU Parking will relocate to a 2,301 square-foot space on the first floor of the building’s southwest corner.

NMSU Auxiliary Administration will relocate to a 2,808 square-foot space on the second floor of the building’s west side. All remaining square footage is comprised of electrical space, mechanical rooms, loading area, public restrooms, elevators, etc.

A plan currently is being formulated to dedicate a parking area by the store exclusively for customers, with the hopes that the spaces will ease the burden on students shopping for textbooks or those wishing to quickly stop in for a coffee or to purchase Aggie merchandise.

A grand opening celebration will occur in September, after students arrive back on campus. The Aug. 1 opening is intended as a courtesy to students as they return to campus for the fall 2011 semester; they will be able to pick up their textbooks for the new semester at that time.

The new store will be a flagship of sorts for Barnes & Noble – it will be the first store in the chain to feature the company’s newly designed tech center featuring Apple products. The center will include Wi-Fi and will allow customers to access free in-store downloads for NOOK eBook readers. The NOOK itself also will be available for purchase.

Additional features of the new store will include an expanded children’s section, a wider selection of Aggie merchandise and trade books, two “living room” areas featuring gas fireplaces for casual reading or public presentations, an outdoor dining area featuring a third fireplace and a vast array of images and fixtures showcasing the rich history of NMSU, Las Cruces and the Desert Southwest.

The “living room” areas will be available to campus and community organizations to host presentations or meetings.

To schedule time for access, patrons should contact NMSU Conference Services at 575-646-4805 or confserv@nmsu.edu.

Indigenous trees and plants currently are being planted around the perimeter of this newly LEED-certified building, supporting the university’s strong commitment to sustainability.

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