Squeezed Out?

Originally published in the Daily Item on March 22, 1008

Will there be room for an independent bookstore? Recently, all of the local newspapers trumpeted the news of Bucknell University’s desire to purchase two Market Street properties and relocate its bookstore to downtown Lewisburg.

Charles Pollock, vice president of External Relations, believes the development will benefit both the university and Lewisburg. Pollock indicated moving university properties downtown could only support the businesses more the before.

A bookstore downtown would have longer hours and more inventory drawing even more students to Market Street.

Lewisburg currently has an independent community bookstore, Page After Page, located across the street from the property Bucknell is considering for its bookstore. Neither Mr. Pollock, the University nor the Downtown Partnership have mentioned the effect a university bookstore might have, with its longer hours and more inventory, on this independent bookstore.

Plus, let’s not discount the fact that Bucknell may very well keep a bookstore on campus to accommodate students. If that is the case, will students still flood Lewisburg?

What will be sold in the bookstore downtown if students continue to buy books on campus? There are many questions to be answered, especially who will operate the store and what will it carry? Will it be Barnes and Noble? Will they take the opportunity to cater to the general public?

The Union County Planning Commission is currently running a series of ads and public meetings asking important questions about what will exist when our children grown up. One of the questions, on a poster depicting two children reading at Page After Page asks, “Will there be a neighborhood bookstore in Union County when their children are grown?” ¬†Will there?

~Murrie A. Zlotziver, Lewisburg
Murrie Zlotziver owns Page After Page, located at 336 Market Street, Lewisburg

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