Out of the darkness and into the light comes Jefferson Community and Technical College’s new Barnes and Noble bookstore.
Its predecessor was located in the basement of another JCTC building.
According to president Ty Handy, the space didn’t have a lot of natural light and was difficult to find.
“It just wasn’t a lively space for students,” Handy said Tuesday at the ribbon-cutting.
Beyond it not being a space for current students to enjoy, he talked about how the bookstore acts as a place for first impressions for prospective students.
“One of the first places they go to is the college bookstore,” Handy said. “So to be able to transition from what we had, which wasn’t bad, to what we have now, which is going to be great, is a wonderful opportunity.”
The space at 200 W. Broadway, where the new bookstore is located, is owned by the Jefferson Community and Technical College Foundation Inc. but not the college itself.
Handy said that meant they couldn’t put the college’s money directly into renovating the building.
Louisville-based architect firm Luckett and Farley, which has a department dedicated to higher education buildings, came in to help develop, build and fund the renovation. The firm is now a part-owner of the building.
William Maffett, who works for Luckett and Farley, said the renovation improves the lives of students and contributes to the effort to update the Broadway area.
“Revitalization of our downtown is more important now than ever,” Maffett said.
Students at JCTC will be able to access several items and services at the new bookstore.
“Whether you need a textbook, a snack break, a friendly face with a listening ear, our doors are now open for you,” said Christina Butler, the general manager for 16 Barnes and Noble campus bookstores, including JCTC’s.