Tea Room under renovations to promote sustainability

Head Manager says café leading by example in the community 

Tea Room General Manager Izzy Hazan stands amidst ongoing contruction.

The Tea Room is currently undergoing renovations to increase environmental sustainability.

The project furthers its already widely recognized track record as the first zero consumer-waste, carbon neutral café in North America.

Funded by donations from the Applied Science class of ’82, the café will implement more sustainable practices and materials. The Tea Room will also prepare for more business by expanding its counter to create space for an additional register. 

The changes being made to the coffee shop are meant to reflect it’s three pillars: environmental responsibility, community education, and fiscal sustainability, as outlined by its website. 

In an interview with The Journal, Tea Room Head Manager, Izzy Hazan, said she hopes the new space will expedite the ordering process.  

“A lot of students find it difficult to wait in line for a coffee in the 10 minutes between class, an express till will ultimately allow a quicker, easier experience for everyone involved,” Hazan said. 

Hazan added the extra room created in the café will allow more individual study space, in addition to the possibility of a group study table.

Following the recent renovations, Hazan said the Tea Room is also looking to expand the ‘student-on-a-budget’ friendly menu, with talks of adding mac and cheese as well as greater variety of eco-friendly milk selection. 

According to Hazan, the changes to the café will allow more opportunities for the promotion of environmental awareness, including the use of environmentally educational posters to promote sustainable practices.  

Hazan said the Tea Room is considering more environmentally friendly incentives to encourage customers to make sustainable choices.

In terms of the renovation’s environmental footprint, the café will be using sustainable materials like straw and bamboo to replace the use of lumber or laminate. 

By bolstering the café’s environmental awareness, Hazan said she hopes other cafés in the area adopt similar sustainable practices. 

The Tea Room has demonstrated past success in influencing cafés in the area to go green. It’s the first of its kind to implement compostable packaging, which according to Hazan, has already created a ripple effect on campus and in local businesses.

Hazan said the new renovations will break down more barriers and open up doors to the use of sustainable materials. 

“Setting the standards of using sustainable material in the physical structure of the café will be an additional factor which will influence how other cafes can participate in environmentally friendly practices as well,” she said. 


September 25, 2023

The original text of this article incorrectly described Izzy Hazan’s position as The Tea Room’s General Manager. She is its Head Manager. 

The Journal regrets the error


Campus construction, Sustainability, The Tea Room

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