Plum Market to join Chartwells in the Oakland Center


Courtesy of Oakland University

The Oakland Center renovation hopes to better host the growing student body.

The Michigan-based Plum Market has claimed a spot in the Oakland Center when the renovation is completed in the fall of 2018. Usually functioning as a grocery store, the location will host an array of soups, sandwiches, salads, coffee and the like. It will join Au Bon Pain, Panda Express, Chick-fil-A and others in one of the most trafficked areas on campus.

In a space currently blocked off by slabs of drywall, Plum Market will be located across from Pioneer Food Court where the Division of Student Affairs office space used to be according to Director of the Oakland Center, Chris Reed.

“[Plum Market and Au Bon Pain] have some resemblances, but Plum Market will offer more than what we currently offer through the ABP location,” Reed said. “All of our current food services will continue to exist in the Oakland Center, this is just going to add on to that.”

The decision to add Plum Market to the OC’s dining options was announced on Dec. 13. According to a press release, one of the main reasons the company was selected is its healthier meals that “build a sense of community around dining.” Plum Market also prides itself of serving organic as well as local produce and meats.

Another reason is that this addition will give students, staff and faculty more options, as the OU community buys about 350,000 meals on campus per semester.

“What [Plum Market] has to offer is unique to what we offer in the Oakland Center and on campus,” Reed said. “There will be high-end and quick-to-grab food options. There will also be custom order options available and we also get to bring in Zingerman’s Coffee from Ann Arbor to provide service for pastries and bread products.”

With the closest locations being in Ann Arbor and West Bloomfield, the company is excited to introduce itself to a new group of Michiganders.

“We could not be more excited to open this Plum Market location,” said Plum Market CEO and Co-Founder Matt Jonna in a press release. “It’s an honor to have our brand complement Oakland University’s newly renovated dining facility. We believe our concept brings fresh and healthy offerings many of the students and staff will appreciate.”

Reed visited the Ann Arbor location before finalizing the decision to bring in the company and is optimistic that the campus community will enjoy the addition.

“I’ve had the food and picking out a favorite is actually very difficult,” he said. “I’ve had a lot and I would hate to pick a favorite because it was all very good. There wasn’t anything I did not like, so I can put it that way.”

With the renovation adding a lot of new space to the OC, Reed expects the addition of Plum Market will be just one more thing the campus can enjoy about the much-needed building expansion.

“We’re trying to do something a little different than what we normally do with the traditional fast food in the Oakland Center,” he said. “One of our goals through this is to create a seven day a week facility where people can go every day of the week. I think this will help facilitate that vibe.”