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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Editorial: UA parking poses problems

    If you couldn’t find a parking space while rushing to class yesterday, you probably weren’t alone. A student driving around campus on the first morning of school would have found that virtually every parking garage flashed the “”full”” sign, and all the lots were off-limits to non-permit holders.

    With nearly 30,000 students, the UA currently boasts 13,000 parking spaces. It doesn’t take a math major to figure out that we have a parking shortage on our hands.

    As the Arizona Daily Wildcat reported yesterday, there have been five lot closures in the last year, and all Zone 1 lots south of North University Boulevard have become “”lot specific”” – meaning that you need a permit for that particular lot to park there. The change may have been made to accommodate those who work in particular buildings, but it left many feeling frustrated. Even shelling out hundreds of dollars for a permit no longer seems to guarantee a space.

    “”I had to spend $100 more just to get a ‘lot specific’ that’s nowhere near anything,”” one student told the Wildcat. For students, this is more than a simple inconvenience. When you’re trying not to get dropped from classes on the first day – or run afoul of professors with zero tolerance lateness policies the rest of the semester – those few extra minutes spent finding a space can make a major difference on your transcript.

    We can sympathize with the dilemma faced by Parking and Transportation Services. Shuffling parking privileges won’t change the fact that the UA campus is just too small to accommodate every student driver. There’s public transportation, of course, but it’s not a practical option for students who don’t live within a reasonable radius of campus.

    As anyone who’s tried to drive down North Park Avenue anytime between breakfast and dinner knows all too well, the UA is an extremely congested campus. That’s understandable: It would have been impractical to build a car-free campus in a region with Tucson’s punishing temperatures. But our campus is so overstuffed with vehicles that there are days when entire blocks resemble used car lots.

    When the first classes met at the UA in 1891, there were only 32 undergraduates enrolled. Sometimes it’s hard not to long for those days, but there’s no way to bring them back. The UA’s constant expansion is as unstoppable as that of the universe itself.

    With the student populace growing every year, the UA is going to have to find a comprehensive solution to the parking problem. Let’s hope they start looking for it sooner rather than later.

    Editorials are written by the Wildcat opinions board and written by one of its members. They are Andi Berlin, Justyn Dillingham, Lauren LePage, Lance Madden and Alisa Wilhelm.

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