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OU Food Services director says Cate Restaurants could return in fall semester

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Cate construction

Construction at Cate Center July 24, 2018. OU Housing and Food had confirmed that Cate Restaurants will be closing permanently in order to attract more students to the new restaurants at Cross OU.

Cate Restaurants could possibly reopen after having been closed since May 2018.

Frank Henry, OU Food Services director, said there is a chance the campus dining location will open again this fall pending evaluation of other campus dining locations, specifically the new dining options located in Cross.

“We work with university leadership to evaluate all of our services and restaurants prior to the start of each school year to ensure student and guest needs will be best met,” Henry said. “The possibility of Cate Restaurants opening again next year will be included in the overall Campus Dining review. At this time, no decisions have been finalized for the next academic year.”

The original purpose for closing Cate Restaurants was to move more traffic to the new dining options at Cross.

“(Cate) was (closed) to try to get people to go down to Cross, and we haven't seen that swell down there,” Henry said.

In Cate’s absence, Henry said OU Housing and Food services has seen an increase in business at other locations like the Oklahoma Memorial Union food court, Xcetera and Couch Express.

Cate Restaurants has been closed since the end of the spring 2018 semester, originally for renovations during the summer but it was never reopened. Cate Restaurants had been in operation for 66 years.

After the renovations and eventual closure, the building became Central Production, a location for Housing and Food services to prepare grab-and-go items that are sold across campus.

Many upperclassmen students were disappointed in the closure, and a number took to Twitter with the hashtag #JusticeForCate.

Henry said Housing and Food will reevaluate the situation at the end of the semester to determine whether the location will reopen.

“We're holding out hope we may open Cate again in the fall,“ Henry said. “It’s a very popular place.”

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