Promenade Loses Second Lunch Spot

Pandini's Pizza is the second Promenade restaurant to close this fall.

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Promenade Loses Second Lunch Spot

Chad Davis, Staff Writer

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One question plagues students of all ages: what’s for lunch.  What is for certain that it won’t be Pandini’s Pizza.  Not necessarily the most popular spot to grab a quick lunch before your next class, Pandini’s was one of the only places within one mile of PSULV that one could quickly buy lunch for a reasonable price.  With a dwindling number of restaurants offering student discounts; eating at school is becoming the best (and only) option for a fast meal.

“It sucks that we are running out of places to go for a quick lunch that’s also affordable,” one student said.

What Happened

About a month ago Pandini’s changed significantly. Signs stated that they no longer would sell pasta, and their soda machine was nearly entirely removed; with only diet lemonade and gatorade available.  This all seemed as if they were undergoing renovations to improve the experience; however, the dwindling staff should have hinted at a different reason.  The following week a new sign was posted.  After 10 years of service, Pandini’s was closing.  While it was a single, mildly popular restaurant; it is not the first to close this fall.  A more popular spot closed not long before Pandini’s that caused some outrage; Subway.  The closing of Subway was covered in another Nittany News article by Justin Gallagher.  Subway experienced a similar drop in staffing, and both were fast food spots that students could get discount meals.  Which leads to the belief that another closing may be in store.

What’s Next

There are only a couple inexpensive, fast places to eat left at the Promenade: Cosi, and Crêpe Soleil.  Crêpe Soleil is most likely safe as it is unique and not easily replaced.  Also, it tends to be crowded despite being a small space.  Cosi on the other hand is very similar to both Subway and Pandini’s.  It offers both quick, cheap food, and student discounts.  Should the Promenade shops be transitioning to sit-down restaurants over fast, take out spots; Cosi may be at risk of closure.  While initially Cosi does not seem like it will close due to it’s popularity; Subway had a ton of customers and it closed early in the fall.  Cosi may maintain it’s position as the number one spot for students, or it may be cleared out and replaced with another formal restaurant, which seem to be the only places safe from closing.

Finding a cheap lunch within a five minute drive has become even more of a challenge.  However, the handful of places in the Promenade that still offer student discounts are viable options.

“The Promenade is a great place for lunch, it is much nicer than the places we had in New Jersey,” said Zach Wander.

While two of the best options for lunch have closed, there is still hope.

“Restaurants closing means that new, better ones can take their places,” explains Evan Fahs.

It is sad to see local favorites like Subway and Pandini’s close, however it allows for new favorites to come.  When these new restaurants come, that is if they will be replaced by restaurants, hopefully they will offer products similar to their predecessors: quick and inexpensive meals that fuel students everywhere.