Home News Reimagining the Guadagni Lounge: a taste of things to come

Reimagining the Guadagni Lounge: a taste of things to come

by Laurence Brisson Dubreuil February 11, 2020
Reimagining the Guadagni Lounge: a taste of things to come

Faculty, alumni and students brainstorm to decide what the future has in store for the G-Lounge.

Motivated to make better use of the G-Lounge, which, as a huge empty space, is bursting with potential, faculty, alumni and students met on Jan. 30 for the second phase of its consultation: Reimagining the Guadagni Lounge. The goal of the consultation was simple: revisit ideas shared during the first consultation, give an opportunity for people to make new suggestions, and finally start putting these ideas into motion – fortunately, this is in the process of changing. Starting in September with the opening of the Loyola Art Hive, a space within the lounge dedicated to cultivating a sense of community through art making.

The Guadagni Lounge, better known as the G-Lounge, is a large, light-filled space located in the Central Building (CC) of Concordia’s Loyola campus. The formerly student-run space known for its “chill” atmosphere and cheap eatery has since become a humdrum place where students sit around makeshift tables made of wooden barrels to pass time between classes.

The event kicked off with an opening word from the Dean of Students, Andrew Woodall, about the importance of including students in all aspects of the revitalization of the G-Lounge. Led by Concordia Masters student Tejaswinee Jhunjhunwala, the consultation was split into activities where participants were pushed to mingle and exchange ideas about what they envision for the lounge.

Going back to the drawing board, everyone began brainstorming; some recurring suggestions included bringing back an affordable food facility, setting up a space for students to jam and create art, and overall just putting the space to good use for students at Loyola.

The abrupt closure of the bustling student-run café inside the G-Lounge in the summer of 2018 and the subsequent lockdown of the space left generations of Concordians feeling nostalgic.

“The space here has meant so much to so many people,” said a former student at the consultation. “We’ve even had members get married between these walls, it’s important that this space remains for students and the community.”

Several people said they think that the spacious hall was not only a great spot for students to buy a diverse range of affordable food, but was also an important space for them to socialize and it was even dubbed a rocking student hangout.

After being split into smaller groups, people were asked to write down their “craziest” and “most ambitious” ideas. Suggestions that were repeated by several people included having a student-run coffee bar with affordable food options, using the space for movie screenings, and opening a student bar. Everyone was also asked to write down what hindrances each idea is likely to face; lack of funds is one of the more significant restraints that people almost unanimously agreed on.

“Ideas are cheap,” said Woodall, recognizing that money may be an obstacle. “We still have to consider what can realistically be done.” Be that as it may, no one hesitated to pick up a sharpie and jot down all of their ideas.

The future of the G-Lounge is still to be settled, but the level of engagement and motivation present during this second consultation is at the very least something to be hopeful about.

More costly ideas for the lounge include:

  • Student bar
  • A pool table
  • Farmers market
  • Satellite Hive
  • A fully equipped kitchen (dishware, mugs, utensils)
  • Additional sinks
  • Cooking classes
  • Table tennis
  • Video games
  • Rock climbing wall
  • More couches
  • Induction plates

On the more affordable side:

  • Leave a book, take a book station
  • Informative posters
  • Movie nights (i.e. putting the projector and screen to use)
  • Board games
  • Kettles
  • Weekly free snacks, coffee and/or breakfast
  • Educational food program
  • Compost bins

The ones that just need to be shared:

  • Bring your pet corner
  • Nap areas
  • Silent disco or instruments
  • Pre-game tailgate
  • Weekly activities with Concordia’s “lab rats”

 

Photo by Laurence Brisson Dubreuil

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