The Subway sandwich shop at 312 E. 51st St. closed for business this month. Subway joins Sahara Mediterranean in shuttering its doors within the past year, further limiting walking-distance food options for UMKC students living on campus.
Restaurant closures have been a significant theme of the past year, with over 110,000 restaurants closing long term or permanently nationwide. Kansas City has not been an exception.
“It’s been a bit of a ghost town around here,”said Selby Marksbury, a Pizza 51 employee for the past six years. “There’s been so much change from COVID. Fewer students, restrictions changing all the time and just generally less people out walking around.”
As restaurants struggle to stay in business and adapt, so do consumers. UMKC students with means and ready transportation have a litany of food options, however, the closing of Subway and Sahara seriously affects students living on campus without a car. A further squeeze is put on students living with a shoe-string budget.
The USDA says the cost of food ranges from $45 to $90 per week for college-age individuals. This number accounts for groceries only and does not calculate takeout or dining. The amount can spike to $400 a month when considering other factors.
With these restrictions in mind, here are eight reasonably priced food options within a half of a mile of campus that are still in operation:
Located inside the Student Union, this is a lunch-only option for students. Baja Fresh serves tacos, burritos, quesadillas, salads and bowls.
Open at 10:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. Closed on weekends.
Also located inside the second floor of Student Union on the second floor, Chick-fil-a. The renowned fast-food chain serves chicken sandwiches, nuggets, salads and sides.
Open at 10:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Closed on weekends.
The Kangaroo pantry is provided free of charge to UMKC students and faculty who face food insecurity. Students can visit once a week to pick up to 20 items. Students only need to show up at 4825 Troost, Room 103 during hours with their student ID.
Open Tuesday 1:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. along with Wednesday and Thursday 1 p.m. to 5p.m.
As the name suggests, Pizza 51 is located just west of campus on 51st Street serving pizza, sandwiches and beer. They are available for indoor and outdoor dining, delivery and curbside pickup.
Open everyday at 11 a.m. until 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday they stay open until 10 p.m.
In business for 30 years at 314 East 51st St., Kin Lin’s menu features a large collection of Chinese food offerings. They currently offer take out, delivery and limited dine in seating.
Open at 11 a.m. until 9 p.m.
Just next to Kin Lin is Crows Coffee, which serves breakfast burritos and quiche as well as coffee, tea and pastry. They currently offer takeout and dine-in services.
Open at 6:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. everyday.
While colloquially known as a ‘whole paycheck,’ there are some affordable prepared food options at Whole Foods: sushi, salads, snacks, sandwiches and so on. Students can purchase groceries for meal prep as well.
Open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. everyday.
Best known for fried chicken gizzards and livers dipped in their G sauce, Go Chicken Go is located just south and east of campus near Rockhurst. They serve fried chicken, sides and dessert.
Open at 10 a.m until 12:30 a.m. Monday through Thursday and closing at 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday.
Open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday.