Group gets new local

After negotiations ended last year between the People’s Potato and auxiliary services, the student run kitchen was offered a new location on the seventh floor cafeteria and the group opened its counter on Sept. 4.
The People’s Potato, which prepares, cooks and serves free vegan lunches every weekday, has a three- year contract with the university and an option for two additional years. The university will pay for the utilities and the maintenance of appliances, and in exchange the People’s Potato will pay $10,000 in rent.
“The People’s Potato was poorly located in Reggie’s basement,” said Robert MacIver, director of auxiliary services. “They had to bring their huge hot pots from the seventh floor to the basement. It was difficult and dangerous. They approached me to develop a different option. That is when I thought about a section of the cafeteria that was being used as a storage locker, where the People’s Potato could have a counter and would not have to travel far with the food.”
Zev Tiefenbach, the group’s project co-ordinator, said that he was enthusiastic about the offer that MacIver made. “It’s a great idea and it is good for us and the administration.”
MacIver added that the counter at the cafeteria would make the People’s Potato more visible and that he hopes there will be a happy co-habitation between Sodexo-Marriott, which runs the cafeteria.
In the kitchen, a cage separates the student run kitchen and the one run by Sodexo-Marriott. Tiefenbach said that the cage would clearly define the boundaries between both kitchens and avoid anyone from accusing the other of something.
Tiefenbach added that even though it was logistically easier to bring the food to hungry students at the counter, there was also a down side to the new location. “In Reggie’s we had a sense of community and I am afraid to lose that.”

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