ASNU Debates New Picnic Tables, GPC Patio

Photo courtesy of http://eagle.northwestu.edu

By Elias Horn

The ASNU team discussed a number of projects intended to improve the Northwest University campus at their weekly meeting on Tuesday, March 27.

For several weeks, ASNU has been considering the possibility of bringing a food truck to campus as a special treat for students. This idea is moving ahead, tentatively planned for Friday, April 4, which is a Northwest Friday date.

Some senators expressed concerns about a possible conflict between the food truck and NU’s contract with Pioneer College Caterers, the catering company that runs The Caf. Traditionally, a meal at The Caf is an important part of the tour provided to prospective students on Northwest Fridays.

“[The food truck] is not catering to Northwest Friday students; it’s serving as an outlet for current students so The Caf is not so overwhelmed,” said ASNU Faculty Adviser Larissa Lilly.

Most students can attest to the overcrowding in The Caf on Northwest Fridays. While the food truck idea is not yet finalized, the plans are moving along. A variety of food trucks are being considered, but the current front-runner is a Mexican food truck.

ASNU also debated plans to implement new warm-weather amenities to the NU campus, particularly a new patio outside the Perks residence hall. Student Body President Micah Lorenz described the vision as a “patio space atmosphere for students to hang out.” The new space would be located between Perks and The Green, and would include picnic tables and chairs.

In past meetings, ASNU has discussed purchasing new picnic tables to replace the existing tables in various locations around campus. The previously planned new picnic tables would cost about $7,000, while an entirely new patio would cost about $25,000, according to Lorenz.

“Another thing we’re looking at is building another volleyball court,” said Student Body Vice President Alex Lee.

With several options to consider, the best course of action was heavily debated by the senate.

“If we were to invest in something like [a new patio], is the significance of other events that happen in the Pecota [patio area] going to be taken away because we have another area?” said Senator at Large Syra Canter.

Canter’s question was not definitively answered, but it does not appear to be a concern shared by the majority of the senate. Funding remained the primary topic of debate.

“It’s a lot easier to raise $7,000 than $25,000,” said Gray/Beatty Senator Hannah Vaughn. “If we are already part of the way towards $25,000, it makes more sense to invest [in a patio].”

As the discussion continued, the focus shifted to a question of necessity. After all, the Seattle area is not known for its sunny weather.

“We have different tables around campus already. To be honest, I don’t see a whole lot of people using the tables around campus,” said Junior Senator Isaac Sayers.

However, a few other senators countered that they do often see students using the existing picnic tables.

The issue remains undecided. Preliminary consensus is that a new patio is unlikely to happen in the near future, while new picnic tables remain under consideration. A student poll on the matter may be forthcoming.

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