Parking ideas good for city
Published: Thursday, February 21, 2013
Updated: Thursday, February 21, 2013 00:02
Try finding a parking spot in any of the neighborhoods close to campus on a weekday, and you might have an easier time finding a solution to help the men’s basketball team get a Pac-12 win.
Parking has continued to be a problem as the university grows in size, and it is one of the main issues the city of Corvallis and the Collaboration Corvallis group has been working on.
The workgroup assigned to parking recently proposed several ideas in order alleviate parking in the near-campus neighborhoods, and we think some of them are decent ideas.
The main one is to expand parking districts in the neighborhoods north and east of campus, requiring residents to get permits in order to park near their house.
During a forum a few weeks ago, several residents spoke out in favor of parking districts, saying they had made parking better in their neighborhoods. But they said the piecemeal application of the districts had sent the problem elsewhere. When Eugene instituted parking districts in all neighborhoods a quarter mile away from campus, officials found people parked just past the parking district, sending the parking problem further out.
By making more parking districts, parking would be less of a problem, with people being encouraged to not park their cars for long in those neighborhoods.
But just making the districts won’t necessarily solve the problem — many park in the near-campus neighborhoods because they’re unwilling to spend the money on an on-campus parking pass. Passes for faculty and staff cost $178 annually, and $130 for students. Having a pass doesn’t guarantee staff or students a place to park near the building they want.
However, a new initiative plans to vary the pricing at different lots based on usage and desirability. Permits for lots closer to the center of campus would cost more, while lots on the periphery used less frequently would cost less.
Officials at the meeting said lots like the one near Reser would cost $20 for parking passes. These steps, combined with improved campus shuttle services, should encourage use of the all the university’s available parking, rather than sending it out into the near-campus neighborhoods.
We think this is a good idea. Many commuters and students would most likely jump at the chance to save on parking costs and wouldn’t mind paying $20 annually to park on campus, rather than having to spend $130 with no guarantee of a spot near where you want.
These solutions aren’t perfect, but they are an important first step in addressing a problem that has gone on for far too long. Parking is a problem, and this could be the first salvo against it.
Editorials serve as means for Barometer editors to offer commentary and opinions on issues both global and local, grand in scale or diminutive. The views expressed here are a reflection of the editorial board’s majority.