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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Parking crunch eased by alternate transportation

UA parking garages seem a bit like shopping mall parking lots. If you have an on-campus parking permit, you’ve probably been coerced into hurrying and freeing up your parking space for a complete stranger.

There’s something bothersome and even dangerous about walking to your car and noticing that another car is impatiently waiting for you to empty up your parking spot. As the driver backs up, flicks on his blinker, and seems to rush you to get in your car and jet out of the garage, you quicken your pace to get out of the situation as soon as possible. Someone needs your parking space, so the polite thing to do is take off.

If people are in a hurry to back out of a parking spot the second they jump in their cars, they face an increased probability of getting into an accident. They can do minor damage by tapping someone’s bumper, or they could hit a person, with devastating results. Severe or superficial, the dangers of careless driving in parking garages are harmful.

Thankfully, this kind of situation shouldn’t happen as often as in the past, at least with respect to a recent Wildcat news report, which stated that UA Parking and Transportation Services has an excess of parking permits this semester.

It makes sense that more students would reject the parking permit option. In a Wildcat report released earlier this year, Parking and Transportation Services marketing manager Bill Davidson said parking prices would go up $50 in 2009 and $116 in both 2010 and 2011. There’s only so much money students can afford to lose each semester. If they accept tuition increases, they’ll have to cut corners somewhere else, and campus parking garages seem to be the casualties in this case.

Even with the permit price increases, there are still fewer spaces for students to use. Several on-campus lots have been torn down to accommodate new residence hall construction, eliminating parking spots. With the increase in costs and reduction in lots, there isn’t much of an incentive to drive to school anymore. It’s convenient to come and go as one pleases, but the costs are beginning to outweigh the benefits, and students are using alternate transportation to get to and from campus.

Because Arizona weather is pretty warm year-round, students can walk or bike to campus without coming down with a case of frostbite. As disgusting as it may be to trek to campus in 100 degree-plus weather, it’s considerably more dangerous to do the same thing in snow.

Roommates can carpool, and residents of certain student apartments can take advantage of the free shuttle services. There have always been multiple forms of transportation available, but students are starting to take advantage of resources.

We support on-campus services and resources, but we also support a student’s honest attempt at managing his or her money. The decrease in campus permit purchases also eases the burden on permit owners, who are less likely to be turned away at parking lots now that more than 1,000 permits have yet to be bought. Cheers to the students who opted out of on-campus parking permits this year. Hopefully, you found a more fiscally responsible option, and you certainly made parking garages feel less like mall parking lots the day after Thanksgiving.

— Editorials are determined by the Daily Wildcat opinions board and written by one of its members. They are Alex Dalenberg, Justyn Dillingham, Laura Donovan, Heather Price-Wright, Dan Sotelo and Anna Swenson.

 

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