Alcohol could be served at University of Windsor once again

A downtown restaurant is expanding to the University of Windsor campus, allowing students to buy alcohol on campus for the first time in two years.

Mazaar restaurant hopeing to open a location on campus mid-Septemeber

Mazaar is will to open a new location at the University of Windsor, making it the first establishment to serve alcohol on campus in two years. (Stacey Janzer/CBC)

A downtown restaurant is expanding to the University of Windsor campus. It could allow students to buy alcohol on campus for the first time in two years.

The Graduate Student Society (GSS) worked on a deal with downtown Lebanese restaurant Mazaar to open in the education building near their offices. 

Iftekhar Basith, president of the GSS, said there's a demand for this kind of service on campus. One of the important parts of the deal for GSS was that it would not assume any liability or cost for the new operation.

"At one phase, we lost hope. It has been going on for a year," said Basith. "We actually struck the deal with Mazaar last summer, so they were supposed to be here last September."

A strike by CUPE Local 1393 last year and concerns from other food services on campus delayed the opening. 

The restaurant has already been built at the location, but they are now waiting on the liquor control board.

"When is this place going to be open?" asks Basith. "When Mazaar is coming? We are all looking forward for some get together, some kind of social drinking."

Imad Najjar, the co-owner of Mazaar restaurant, said they're hoping for an opening date during the week of  Sept. 15.

The GSS required Mazaar to be open to flexible hours, so it would accommodate students who will be at school late.

"We're going to start with the consolidated hours and expand them from that point," explained Najjar. "Hopefully we'll get to longer hours, we'll see how the campus will react to this."

Najjar plans to make use of their patio and open for lunch by the second week of September. 

Students have not been able to purchase alcohol on campus since the university pub, the Thirsty Scholar, closed in 2012. 

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