Well I've only been here three years, each has seen an J Street "update" -- each making the venue dramatically less attractive.
Simply put, the food at J Street today is rather abysmal. Students choose to eat elsewhere because there is better food at better prices at GWorld partners outside the Marvin Center. But it hasn't always been this way.
This is my fifth year at the University, and I've witnessed firsthand J Street offerings get progressively worse - in both quality and diversity of choices. Regrettably, it's been a devolution, not evolution of changes.
My freshman year I ate at J Street several times a week and was fairly happy with its offerings. Name brand eateries such as Subway and Starbucks were generally fast and served products on par with any of their other franchises. Since then, Sodexho has turned most everything into generic brands that just aren't good quality.
This year, I can count the times I've eaten at J Street on one hand... and that's too many.
In recent weeks, Student Association leaders have lobbied the administration to diminish the unpopular mandatory minimum spending at J Street.
I also feel very bad for the freshman and sophomores forced to spend a large chunk of their gworld money there, subsiding what would otherwise be an unprofitable endeavor for the food service company.
Ceasar correctly concludes, "The crux of the supply-and-demand problem lies in the quality of the dining options."
The university and Sodexho are providing a product that simply can't compete with the plethora of other options downtown has to offer. Until they fully recognize this, they'll continue to have no other choice than a socialist/welfare based cafeteria regime. I mean the food kind of does taste like something from a Soviet gulag. Free market capitalism anyone?