Radford University reinvents dining experience through hot, cold lockers

Radford University reinvents dining experience through hot, cold lockers
Hot and cold lockers at Radford University (Source: WDBJ)

RADFORD, Va. (WDBJ) - Mobile food ordering has been popular during the COVID-19 pandemic, but keeping food hot or cold while you pick it up has its challenges. Now, Radford University has a first-of-its-kind solution pairing the two.

Campus might be quiet right now, but have been busy installing Get & Go food lockers to safely enhance the dining experience during COVID times.

“This is an opportunity for our students, faculty and staff to have contactless ordering,” University Spokesperson Caitlyn Scaggs said. “We certainly hope that students, faculty and staff realize this is an extension of our commitment to provide a safe and engaging learning environment here on the Radford campus.”

The pandemic has caused colleges around the world to reinvent the dining experience and Radford is no exception.

You’ll soon be able to skip the line at five popular restaurants on campus and your food will stay hot under the red lights (145 degrees) or cold under the blue (35 degrees). There is also an ‘ambient’ option that has no temperature control. All lockers can switch as needed.

The feature is available for students or staff who have dining plans and does not require additional funds.

Breezing through the app you can customize and schedule your food pickups. Once you’re done and your meal is prepared, a staff member locks it for up to 20 minutes in a food locker.

Upon your arrival, you scan a barcode; then the locker will pop open.

“This is first-of-its-kind. There are certainly mobile ordering options out there, there are also locker systems out there, but pairing the two with the temperature controls that are found in this locker system is novel,” Scaggs said. “It’s very unique and we are so thrilled to have it here at Radford now.”

There are four locker units on campus that you can Get & Go.

The lockers were made possible through a partnership between the university and Chartwell’s Higher Education using technologies by CBORD Group, RPI Industries and Panasonic System Solutions Company of North America.

Copyright 2020 WDBJ. All rights reserved.