A line of University of Maryland students from all over the campus stretched out the door Thursday morning for the grand opening of Dunkin' Donuts at Terrapin Row.
The nationwide coffee and baked goods chain was originally set to open on the ground floor of the off-campus apartment complex last month, franchisee Usman Chaudhry said. Building the store — and securing the necessary permits — took longer than expected, he said.
"Students on campus have been waiting forever," Chaudhry said, "but I'm happy that we're here now."
Even though Caroline Pickart won't be a student at this university much longer, she said it's still great that Dunkin' is coming to Terrapin Row. The business sits on the corner of Building B near Knox Road.
"I'll be graduating soon," the senior architecture major said, "but whoever is living here next is going to have a great time with it."
Freshman criminology and criminal justice major Madison Hine said she has been waiting for Dunkin' to open for a long time. She said she can walk to the establishment from where she lives in Talbot Hall on South Campus, calling its opening a "godsend."
Franchisee Ray Omar said he wants this location to be a place where students can come to hang out, study and get the coffee and food they need. Chaudhry said he expects most of the customers to be students at this university, but anyone who is walking by is welcome to come in.
The new location does not have a parking lot, drive-thru or Baskin-Robbins like other Dunkin' Donuts do, Chaudhry said. This means there will be some specials this location is excluded from, he said, but the smaller footprint made Terrapin Row a perfect location for the single franchise.
For the rest of the week, Dunkin' will sell any size iced coffee for 99 cents, Omar said. Other specials include two egg and cheese wraps for $2, two egg and cheese sandwiches for $3 and 2 bacon, egg and cheese croissants for $5.
Sophomore criminology and criminal justice major Joshua Lang was impressed by the eatery's service and quality, adding that it will be nice to be able to get coffee whenever he wants.
"I think it's great," Lang said. "The food's already ready — I waited like a minute, so I am really happy right now."
Sophomore kinesiology major Misha Bucknor said she was excited for the Dunkin' to open even though she lives on North Campus. She said Dunkin' is cheaper and better than Starbucks.
"I think I'll come here often, just because of where my classes are placed," Bucknor said.
Other businesses have also signed leases for Terrapin Row's open ground floor space, including Wings Over, Cheers Cut, fast-casual Korean restaurant SeoulSpice, Hawaiian-inspired Poki District and Taiwanese bubble tea eatery Gong Cha. Both Terrapin Row and Orlo Fund, the company that owns Terrapin Row's retail space, declined to comment.
Jack Murphy, a junior environmental policy major, said he was excited for Wings Over to open, but didn't know when it would.
"It's kind of weird because I don't really know when anything is opening," Murphy said. "I don't know whether or not to get excited because it could be like three months in the future."
This Dunkin' location is holding raffles and working with the Make-A-Wish Foundation to raise awareness for terminally ill kids, Omar said. Omar, a military veteran, said Dunkin' will partner with ROTC as well.
Chaudhry said he wants to have a give-and-take relationship with the community and grow with this university. He said he will work to make sure all parties benefit from Dunkin's opening.
"The crowd has been tremendous," Omar said. "I think there's been an outpouring of love for Dunkin' — hopefully we can make UMD run on Dunkin'."
CORRECTION: Due to an editing error, a previous version of the headline on this article incorrectly stated the Dunkin' Donuts is located near Terrapin Row. It is under Terrapin Row. This article has been updated.