They got games. On October 9, Game Gallery -- which sells and rents video and computer games and buys back used ones -- moved into a storefront near 40th and Walnut streets, filling a campus-retail void left by last January's departure of Software Etc. from the 3401 Walnut Street complex. The approximately 1,200-square-foot property currently occupied by Game Gallery is one of the few non-University-owned retail spaces surrounding the Penn campus. The retail change means that Campus Text -- a popular discount textbook seller that briefly operated in the space for a few weeks at the beginning of the semester -- will likely not move back into the space anytime soon. Campus Text replaced Going Greek, which sold Greek-letter paraphernalia to Philadelphia fraternities and sororities. Going Greek closed last January when the 13-store chain went out of business. "I live in Philly and this is an area I've always wanted to put a store in," store owner Manuel Metsikas said. "I've been looking for a 'for rent' sign for a while and I finally found one." Game Gallery -- part of a 15-store chain with locations in and around Philadelphia -- sells new and pre-owned games for the many Nintendo systems, the Sony PlayStation and personal computers. The store, which offers students a $3 discount, also rents games. Metsikas said he hopes to attract students as well as area residents to his newest location. The Game Gallery's one-year lease -- which started at the beginning of October, according to Metsikas -- would prevent Campus Text from selling books in that location during the next two semesters. Campus Text, originally named Penn Text, operated from Ryder trucks beneath the 38th Street footbridge from 1994 until 1998. In the May 1997 settlement that resolved Campus Text's 1996 lawsuit against the University, Campus Text was ordered to seek Penn's authorization before operating on campus. After the company formally requested to keep its 38th Street location, the University failed to respond quickly enough for the bookseller to plan its fall sales. This forced the company to find the alternate location, owner Michael Saewitz said last month. Campus Text officials did not return repeated calls for comment yesterday. Despite the short-term lease, Metsikas said he "plans on being on Penn's campus for a long time."Comments powered by Disqus
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