New Cafeteria Promoting Wellness, Sustainability and Gastronomy Opens

Food Café Offers Healthy Menus, Composting and Cutting Edge Technology

A stellar new cafeteria designed by GSA to promote good health, wellness, sustainability, and customer satisfaction officially opened at the Department of the Interior on Nov. 8.

GSA had been tasked with developing the template for the site after submitting the winning DOI request for proposal.

Representatives from GSA, the Department of the Interior’s Secretary Salazar, special guest White House Senior Advisor for Healthy Initiatives Sam Kass, and hundreds of federal employees and the public joined in solidarity for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. The new dining facility serves more than 1,000 individuals per day during the workweek and is now the blueprint for federal cafeterias nationwide.

“On July 28, this cafeteria reopened, following a two year, stem-to-stern modernization,” said GSA’s Public Buildings Service Commissioner Bob Peck in his opening remarks. “This is our most spectacular cafeteria remake to date. Both in response to demands from our customers and to President Barack Obama’s Health and Wellness Initiative, GSA is making major strides in upgrading our food service.”

GSA developed the cafeteria’s model contract design that incorporated many of the elements in the president’s initiative. These include a greater emphasis on environmentally sustainable operations, healthier food selections, and fresher products. The concessions vendor for the cafeteria, Sodexo, incorporates organic products and locally grown produce with a mini farmers market. Additionally, menus post the nutritional value of each selection so consumers can make more informed decisions about their meals.

The cafeteria features newly restored skylights brightening the dining room with natural light and an onsite composting area. It is expected to reach Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design gold certification.

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