Editorial: Students pay an arm and a leg for parking that isn’t always guaranteed

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Student parking at the Downtown campus, or lack thereof… Really, where to even begin?

Perhaps we start with the unreasonably long parking permit lines that hundreds of us must wait in during the beginning of each semester? Is there no better system for distributing parking credentials besides an understaffed desk with overworked Georgia State students?

Or maybe we should reflect on the fact that only a small percentage of people are accepted for parking passes to begin with (which cost hundreds of dollars and must be purchased around the same time that we are all scraping pennies for class dues and textbooks). Thus, a greater number of students are either coughing up $5 a day to park in one of the parking decks, or parking a couple of miles away at Georgia State stadium. If they choose the latter, they must ride the overcrowded shuttles into campus.

We’ve heard students’ comments about the need for more shuttle buses, and we couldn’t agree more. It shouldn’t take an extra 30 minutes to get to and from campus. Is this yet another classic example of an understaffed university?

And while it is a very nice new stadium you have purchased for our us, Georgia State… can we see a show of hands for how many Panthers would have preferred a few new on-campus parking deck acquisitions?

Realistically speaking, Georgia State has a decent amount of parking facilities for a well-established urban area. The problem is that out of all the parking decks and lots, there is not one single parking area exclusively for students.

That’s right. Even our precious and very convenient M Deck—which some of us pay the big bucks to be able to park in each semester—is shared with visitor parkers.

Non-Georgia State affiliated people pay $7 to park in our “student” parking decks all day. So how do students know they are guaranteed a spot every day if random people can come and go as they please?

So who’s going to be the one to tell our professors that we were late because we couldn’t find our nonexistent parking? There is too many people and not enough spots!

Perhaps this is the reason behind the T-Deck (shall we rename it Traffic-Deck?) epidemic. It’s taking people over an hour to exit this (inconveniently located) parking deck. Georgia State Parking, don’t you see that it is a very serious issue if students are tweeting about these traffic jams on a daily basis?                                                                  

With Georgia State Perimeter College now adopting many of our policies, it is high time we adopt one of theirs: free parking, and enough of it…looking at you, Stadium parking. Yes, the setup of the Perimeter campuses is different from the downtown campus, but that doesn’t mean that the students are any different. They might have the room/luxury for spacious parking lots but Georgia State definitely has the money (hence the high student fees we all pay every semester.)

A deciding factor in attending Georgia State was not getting to play musical chairs with parking spots, despite what some may think. This isn’t getting any better either since nearly 4,000 new freshman joined the lot—pun intended—of us this fall at the Downtown campus. That’s record breaking. While our student body continues to grow each year, the parking situation remains the same. And like it or not Georgia State, we are still a commuter college at the core.

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