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Parking permit system costly, dangerous for university students


Potential college students have many things to factor into their decision, including possible financial aid and the cost of tuition.

College students are often perceived as eating ramen noodles with a broken fork for dinner night after night. They try to save money every way they can, like, for example, by taking the Bobcat Shuttle instead of driving.

The university Parking Services department should create a cheaper parking option for students. The department should also extend the hours the permit provides.

The university Parking Services department often makes saving money difficult. Most students usually purchase a residential permit or a Mill Street parking pass for Bobcat Village. According to the parking services website, the permits cost $323 and $177, respectively. Having to make this choice can put a huge dent in college students’ already tight budgets.

The lesser of the two permits allows students to park on Mill Street from Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and in residential green lots from Friday at 5 p.m. to Sunday at 7 p.m. Although it is tempting to choose this option to save money, it also means students have to walk about 2 miles from central campus to Mill Street. This distance is concerning because it places students in possibly unsafe situations to retrieve their vehicles.

The Bobcat Shuttle runs during the week to pick up students and takes them to their classes. Students could take the shuttles to their cars, but the service does not run on the weekends.

Additionally, Texas weather is famous for being unpredictable. A student would need to move his or her car in time to avoid getting an orange parking ticket, even in the pouring rain.

“It was a hassle and waste of my time to have to keep taking time out of my day to retrieve my car,” said Crystal Pizana, psychology freshman.

Instead of continuing with the hassle, Pizana decided to purchase the more expensive permit and deal with less stress. The last thing college students need is to have their transportation farther away and take more time out of their busy days.

The late times at which students must walk to certain parking areas make them risk their lives by walking alone in the dark on the sides of busy roads. Texas State is a wonderful school to attend, but it takes more than pocket change to pay our way through classes. The safety of the students should come before officials’ desire to squeeze out every last penny from our already tiny piggy banks.

Follow Mariana Castillo on Twitter at @mar9cast