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OFDC Commercial Interiors completes dining hall project at Ringling College of Art & Design 

OFDC stools at a bar

OFDC Commercial Interiors has completed the installation of interior furnishings for a new dining hall concept at Ringling College of Art & Design in Sarasota. 

Cunniffe Commons is a 28,000-square-foot, two-story state-of-the-art dining facility designed to meet the highest sustainability standards, including rooftop solar panels, while capturing ample natural light from all directions. The cafeteria offers a variety of independent cuisine stations, including a chef-attended grill, home-cooked hot bar, soup and salad bar, pizza and pasta station, made-to-order deli, and treats section with baked goods, fruits and beverages. The dining hall also offers an allergen and gluten-free station, a plant-based section serving vegan and vegetarian cuisine, a food lab that serves as a teaching kitchen for demonstrations, storage space for student portfolios, a conference room, stage and open event spaces. 

OFDC provided a contemporary design with a curated mix of textures, including steel, wood, fabric and other materials. The firm installed private dining pods with restaurant-style tables and padded bench seating, counter-height tables and complementary stools, park-style seating around steel tables on a second-floor outdoor patio and functional conference room furniture. The color scheme features bold splashes of red, green and brown, as well as classic neutral and black-and-white combinations. 

“Students at Ringling College represent the future of art and design, and we wanted to create a contemporary space that would offer a backdrop for inspiration as they catch a bite to eat,” said OFDC President and CEO Joe Gammons. “This isn’t an ordinary campus cafeteria. From the architectural design to the interior design, this building showcases the possibilities when architects, builders, designers, chefs, administration and students all collaborate to create something truly special.” 

The architectural firm Ayers Saint Gross designed Cunniffe Commons and Willis A. Smith Construction was the construction management firm in charge. Monique Chicvak, an interior designer and interim assistant director of facilities and capital construction at Ringling College, coordinated the project. 

OFDC selected top furniture brands, including Martin Brattrud, Coalesse, Steelcase, Grand Rapids Chair, OFS and Emu. Ringling College, which has an enrollment of 1,700 undergraduate students and 13 degree programs, is Florida’s only institution dedicated exclusively to teaching art and design. 

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