The Southside Living Center is a small UR community unto itself — about 500 students are housed in its two towers and several ground-level maisonettes, which are located about a 12-15 minute walking distance away from the River Campus. As such, Southside has some special resources to accommodate the isolated living style. The Blue Line and Park Lot Shuttles provide regular transportation between the main campus and Southside, and the dorms themselves provide the most apartment-like lifestyle of any campus housing besides the Riverview Apartments. Still, there is one very important resource that Southside residents are lacking: easy availability of food.
The Southside Market is located in the basement of the deKiewiet tower. It’s like the Corner Store, in the sense that it provides grocery items, but it also has much less product variety than the Corner Store, and rather inconvenient business hours. The Southside Market features many of the same basic foods items found at the Corner Store — bread, snacks, drinks, etc. — but its stock is much less reliable, meaning it isn’t surprising to find something as simple as wheat bread or chocolate milk missing from the shelves. Its schedule, meanwhile, is equally unreliable. The store is open from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, closed for all of Friday, and then is open noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday. This is a stark contrast to the Corner Store’s longer and more consistent hours — 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Friday, and noon to 1 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. And it is also cause for some confusion: Since hot coffee, which the store provides, is a part of many students’ morning routines, why does the store not open until 5 p.m. during the week? Why is it completely closed on Friday, of all days? And why is the schedule alternatively broken into afternoon or nighttime shifts, and not just open all day?
It could be argued that since Southside is technically off-campus, its residents are more likely to just buy their food off-campus than rely on a school store. But despite its location, Southside is still considered an on-campus residential area, and as such its residents should be afforded the same grocery conveniences as those who live on the main campus. That is the point of a convenience store, after all. And since each Southside dorm comes with its own kitchen, perhaps the market should be stocked with items geared more toward prepared food and cooking, so residents can easily make inspired meals on their own.