The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Game over, arcade

Daily Sundial

The Starcade Arcade, a longtime source of gaming relief for CSUN students at the Matador Bookstore Complex, has been closed and replaced by an addition to the bookstore.

The University Corporation, which oversees commercial services, saw an opportunity to provide the Matador Bookstore with much needed additional space, said Dave Nirenberg, director of commercial services for the corporation.

“We needed the space for the bookstore,” Nirenberg said. “Because of the stores’ success with the Book Now program, electronic sales have increased dramatically.”

The Book Now program allows students to order their class textbooks directly from the CSUN portal as part of the online registration process. This program was designed to increase online sales, save students’ time, and decrease heavy traffic at the bookstore during the first week of classes, Nirenberg said.

The bookstore’s previous arrangement for online book distribution was neither efficient nor sufficient enough to accommodate the heavy volume of distribution of online text orders.

“It was too time-consuming,” Nirenberg said. “In the past, the bookstore only had a section dedicated to the distribution of online text orders. People would have to run to the back and look for orders as students came in.”

There were several reasons and factors that were considered in the TUC decision to close the arcade, he said. Participation rates for the arcade dramatically decreased in the last two years, there was a need for more appropriate use of the commercial space, and there is a student union which still provides entertainment for students, he added.

It was not the intention of the University Corporation to fully eliminate an entertainment need. The University Student Union also has arcades games, and “its intention is to be the student gathering spot for the campus,” Nirenberg said.

There are others who don’t agree with Nirenberg.

“I liked being able to grab something to eat and going to the arcade after class,” said Arturo Ramirez, sophomore Biology major. “It was convenient for me. Now, you have to go all the way to the Student Union, which isn’t that close to most of my classes, so I probably won’t go there.”

Nirenberg said the decision to close the arcade was based on enhancing the services provided to the majority and making better use of the commercial facility. Since the Matador Bookstore Complex is a commercial building and The University Corporation saw an opportunity to give one of its most thriving businesses’ a much-needed expansion and took out a service that was no longer rendering a high volume of sales as it had in the past, Nirenberg said.

“Things are moving faster than they use to,” said Jean Richards, a junior English major. “At the beginning of a semester you would have to wait in really long lines to get to the counter, then have to wait some more while they searched for your order in the back. It seemed so disorganized in the past.”

Sandy Archila can be reached at

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