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Expensive Parking Angers Students

Title: Expensive Parking Angers Students
Author: Casey Meyer
Date: 12/3/02

University of Missouri Saint Louis students are you fed up with the expensive cost of parking? Is the lack of parking spaces frustrating you? A series of increases in parking began to emerge in nineteen ninety seven. In nineteen ninety eight the student parking passes were near sixteen dollars per credit hour and is still increasing now. It will propably increase again as the years go on. Many of us agree that this should be stopped and to stop this we must demand that we have a choice on how much we pay for parking such as maybe having different costs for where we decide to park maybe having the most convent places cost more to park and the places without a garage a little cheaper so we can at least regulate the amount of money we spend on parking.

This increase in parking is a result of four new parking garages, the Millenium Center and the Millenium Centers walkway. It seems to some of us that we the students of UMSL are being charged unreasonably because of this. Have you ever seen teachers and other faculty park in the students parking garage. I and many other students have seen this. If we were to park in a Faculty or special permit parking spot and was caught doing this more than likely we would receive a ticket. When you read this ask your self is this right? Some Colleges have free parking for students or at least at certain times of the day. Washington University has free parking after four o clock p.m.

UMSL provides emergency vehicle services but this is usually at a cost. If you run out of gas they refill you fuel but we have to pay for the fuel. Normally when we pay for something to UMSL it's expensive.

According to Bob Samples who is the director of University Communication. "The new garages are well lit, safe and aesthethically attractive." If the garage is so attractive then why is it that one of the garages is being renovated right now. Many of us will agree that the new garage on the East side of E. Mark Twain Dr. is in an inconvenient location. If you have ever drove to school between the hours of nine o'clock to eleven o'clock a.m. you would probably agree that this is the time when most likely the parking spaces are scarce. Thoughs who try to find parking spots in the west garage usually can't. When causes us to have to look in the East garage for parking spots which is inconvenient to some of us. Some students may even have to park in lot K which is close to the Metrolink Station. To many of us this is just like parking at the North Hanely Metrolink Station and walking all the way to the class. The metal rods that hold up the other levels of the garage or inconvenient to most of us. I have personally witnessed a student run into the metal rods while backing up and damaged their car. I have also heard stories about this also. When UMSL first decided to do construction on the upper two levels of the garage that's next to the Millenium Center they had parked a truck at the bottom of the last level. It was parked at the ramp in which cars had to go down to exit the garage this was dangerous because of the fact that this was the only area that was blocked off with no notification to the students that it was. This was not safe because I have saw a man drive down to the last level and didn't see the truck till he was half way down the ramp. When he finally saw the truck he had to back up unknowing of whether there was a car speeding to the last level while this man had to back up to the previous level.

UMSL does not have streams of revenue from other fees like some other Universities do. When people whether its students, faculty or visitors come to the Millenium Center they usually may spend money on things in this Center. Many of us agree that the amount of money that we spend on thing in the Millenium Student Center is expensive. There are many other places that we go in the Millenium Center to spend money such as the bookstore in which theirs different varieties of thing to buy and using a card can make it unnoticeable of the amount we spend until we get the bill. There's also two other stores used to supply what most of us would think of as overpriced candy, pastry's and other kinds of food. If that's not bad enough there are parking meters where visitors are suppose to park. Which means that people that have came here just to visit the school have to pay to park.

In the past years parking passes were plastic decals that were inexpensive to make. Static electricity caused the pass the cling to the inside of the window. As the increase of the cost of parking emerged so did the increase in thefts. So the school came up with a new model which is used so that it is a lot harder to steal. This also made it harder to try to remove the sticker from your car. The sticker only last for a semester and If you lose your parking pass you have to pay five dollars just for another one. For the amount that we pay for the sticker many of us would hope to get a free sticker if lost. Faculty and staff who park get their permits on an annual basis. When the sticker is finally removed their may be a remainder of it still left on the window.

According to the campus parking rules and regulations a parking permit is a privilege purchased by the driver to park a vehicle in a certain parking area during certain hours on a space available basis. They say that a parking permit isn't a contract between the University and permitee and that the right is reserved at any time to take away any parking permit that they want, to reassign any vehicle to another parking area and to change the hours and days of rest of restricted permit parking on any parking area they choose. If we are paying twenty dollars a credit hour shouldn't we have a little more control over the situation? What If they decide for no reason to take our parking passes is this fair?


 

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