Ideal Parking Balances Preservation With Practicality

As incoming class sizes grow, on-campus parking has becoming
increasingly crowded and chaotic. The issue arises from the irreconcilable gap
between students’ demand for more accessible parking and transportation and
environmentalists’ desire to reduce the usage of carbon-emitting automobiles.

Even though UCSD Transportation & Parking Services
reported that there are over 1,000 empty parking spaces even during peak hours,
the problem of accessible student parking — that is, not faculty, graduate
student or visitor spaces — still remains. And with periodic talk of a new
parking structure, which would in turn drive up permit prices, the new
council will definitely need to focus
its energy on helping students navigate the muddled parking confusion.

Students rushing to class don’t have time to guess which
parking lot has an empty spot waiting for them. But there’s no easy solution
for this obvious overcrowding. Instead, the council should help promote a more
environmentally friendly alternative: using public transportation.

The overcrowding of UCSD shuttles at peak hours, coupled
with the recent truncation of city bus routes in various areas, leaves students facing a lack of reliable
public transportation. This is why the council should work with T&PS to
design the most efficient routes for students, while keeping the Earth in mind.

Environmental concerns have already prompted T&PS to
purchase electric vehicles for on-campus use and to begin replacing current
shuttles with alternative-fuel powered shuttles, in addition to sponsoring
bike-riding initiatives — a few major steps in UCSD’s contribution to
sustainability and the environment.

But students’ everyday commuting needs still must be
considered. A decrease in the use of cars must be accompanied with alternative
methods for commuting students. Replacing shuttles with environmentally
friendly fuel sources does not improve the reliability of public

The solution lies in providing efficient and convenient
alternatives to car use that are also environmentally friendly. T&PS can maximize efficiency through
better distribution and organization of the different types of parking spaces —
why are all the student spaces being moved from the heart of campus to lots on
the school’s outer rim?

The burden falls on the A.S. Council to lobby for these
student interests. Incoming councilmembers must take into account both the
students’ practical commuting needs and the pressing concern of environmental