The Daily Californian Online

Tully's Coffee Opens New Location on Upper Sproul

By Javier Panzar
Contributing Writer
Monday, September 14, 2009
Category: News > University > ASUC

Students and ASUC officials welcomed the opening of Tully's Coffee on Upper Sproul Plaza on Friday, an addition long in the making and without the controversy of previous attempts to bring corporate chains to campus.

The store, located in the Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union, held its "soft opening" on Sept. 11 after first being proposed in April 2008. Its grand opening will be held Oct. 5.

For some students, worries about bringing a corporate chain to Sproul seem not to be present with Tully's.

"I don't see it any different as Yogurtland or Jamba Juice being open across the street," said sophomore Jessica Haraga.

According to Martin Walker, vice president of retail operations for Tully's, the shop will make an effort to appeal to students by including a computer bar and long hours of operation.

"We really understand this coffee shop is all about the students," Walker said. "We really want to do something the students will welcome and not just be a business."

Under its lease, the shop will be sharing revenues with the ASUC. Nadesan Permaul, director of the ASUC Auxiliary, said this lease agreement is a crucial part of bringing more funds to campus.

"Student groups are having to feel the pinch," he said. "It's places like Tully's that are making it possible to see additional revenue."

Under its lease, Tully's will pay $3,400 a month in rent. After two years of operation the shop will share revenues with the ASUC, setting the new standard for ASUC leases, according to Permaul.

Senior Pedro Guevara, an integrative biology major, said he is optimistic about the future of Tully's on campus.

"I see it as a good thing, they are bringing money into campus," he said. "We are going through budget cuts and I can only see this as helping with that."

However, the competition that Tully's adds to the crowded field of coffee houses around campus is worrying at least one coffee shop.

Joan VanArsdall, manager of Sonoma Coffee Cafe on Durant Avenue, said roughly 60 percent of her clientele is students and is concerned she will lose customers.

"We have only been here since November," she said. "We are still struggling for students to find us."

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