By Jessica Stamp
Over winter break, restaurants close to campus, such as Jimmy John’s and Pizza Joe’s, shut their doors for the last time. In addition to these closures, on-campus dining options have cut their hours, making it more difficult for students to find a place to eat.
The sandwich servicing restaurant Jimmy John’s on Youngstown State University’s campus closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact. The business is centered around on-the-go rush-hour lunches, but with more jobs becoming remote, Jimmy John’s and similar businesses have lost that flow of customers coming in for a quick and easy meal.
Nicholas Koupiaris, Student Government Association president, hopes more businesses will move to Lincoln Avenue so students can have a variety of food and entertainment options close to campus.
“Considering that students do eat at a lot of locations around here on campus, it’s definitely something to kind of keep into the conversation with the university — trying to see if we can get a push for something else to move into there so students have more food options,” Koupiaris said.
Another business that is closing in the area is Pizza Joe’s in the 20 Federal Place located in downtown Youngstown.
This location has experienced a reduced number of foot traffic and as a result is closed permanently.
Koupiaris said more businesses on Lincoln Avenue would offer students a better campus life.
“All I can really do is provide my support for Lincoln Avenue to become a prosperous place for students to be able to go to for food or entertainment,” Koupiaris said. “What [SGA] really values is our students’ campus life, and we really think that places like Lincoln Avenue being so close to the university could help provide better value to student’s campus life.”
The Jimmy John’s location on campus has not released a statement on why it has closed.
In addition to restaurants closing around campus, many on-campus options have limited hours this semester. Many eateries in Kilcawley Center have cut their hours from previous semesters, such as Dunkin’ Donuts, Wendy’s and the KC Food Court. With the exception of Chick-fil-A, all other dining options in Kilcawley Center close by 5 p.m., with various options closing at 2 or 3 p.m.