Parking and transportation complaints this semester spurred the beginning of the discussion at the Academic Senate meeting Feb. 27 to come up with solutions to these issues. 

Academic senate members discuss possible solutions to the parking problem. (Maya Hood / The Poly Post)

Richard Wilson, professor of urban and regional planning, said that there is a belief that there isn’t space available at Cal Poly Pomona for students to park.

“That is not true,” Wilson said. “In the first week of the semester I went to the overflow lots [in Innovation Village] and there were spaces available.”

He said the problem for students is that there aren’t spaces where people want them and that’s a different problem than having no spaces at all. 

Many possible solutions to the issue were discussed. One was improving alternative transportation, which can encourage students to park remotely and convince them to take public transit because there’s a quicker connection. 

Another solution was using existing parking more efficiently such as with a CPP parking app that could allow Parking & Transportation Services to put out messages about what times parking lots filled during the first week of class to assist students in planning their trips to campus. 

Wilson also suggested changing the fees for parking permits to incentivize students who choose to park in farther lots, which would free up spaces in the other parking structures. 

“If our parking permit fee is like an all-you-can-eat Golden Corral-type arrangement, you buy it for a semester, and you use it as much as you can,” Wilson said. 

He also suggested taking some of the most convenient spots where people only park for a certain amount of time and charging an extra fee so that those convenient spaces can serve more people.

There was also the idea of building another parking structure. However, the issue with building new parking facilities, Wilson said, is that the student parking fee would increase to around $400 per semester for 20-30 years, depending on bond repayments, which would burden students with a very high cost. 

For economic reasons, he said using what the school already has is a better solution. 

Wilson added that the reason CPP’s parking pass fee is higher than other CSUs is because students are paying the bond repayments on two structures at once.

Senate members are also concerned about the length of the add-drop periods compared to other CSUs with high enrollment rates. Add-drop period might be shortened by 10 instructional days and dropping at week two would require instructor permission.

The reason students will need to petition to drop after the aforementioned 10-day period is that faculty members were concerned with classes which involve a lot of projects, as dropping late affects the entire class. Another reason for the proposed change is that students who drop at the very last second leave empty seats that could’ve been filled by students who were attending the class and hoping to get a seat. 

Registrar Daniel Parks explained his concerns about the change. He said that it could cause confusion and missed deadlines for students. There will be more Ws, which refer to withdrawals, which will negatively impact students’ success. 

“We are getting an increasing number of late acceptances to a class after the W deadline and after census as well,” Parks said. “This allows a student into a class to add late, four weeks later or more.”

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