Union Depot in downtown St. Paul will soon be able to offer its visitors an on-site coffee and snack option when The Java Express opens there on June 20. The coffee shop, owned by Crystal Scott, will operate for 60 days from a temporary space located along the original ticketing windows in the Head House. The Java Express will then move into its permanent location, Suite 120, which was once a fine dining location and used as an American Red Cross canteen, in the northwest corner of the Head House.
Scott, a first-time entrepreneur, completed small business management and marketing courses and received mentoring and start-up funding through the Neighborhood Development Center, Inc. (NDC) program that assists minority business owners in launching their ventures. The Java Express will offer a variety of coffees, teas, smoothies, pastries, and other grab-and-go items. Hours of operation while in the temporary space are expected to be 7:00 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Sunday. “This is a wonderful opportunity for a minority-owned and woman-owned small business to launch in Lowertown,” said Rafael E. Ortega, Chairman, Ramsey County Regional Railroad Authority. “The Java Express, owned by Crystal Scott, will offer coffee at Union Depot and create a welcoming community space for travelers and locals.”
When the coffee shop moves to its permanent space, it will offer occasional live music performances and will have a conference table area where community groups and individuals can hold meetings. The menu offerings will expand and include chicken and waffles. The shop will also have tables for outside seating on Union Depot’s North Plaza. More information about The Java Express will be available soon upon the launch of their Facebook page, The Java Express, and their website.