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Students often struggle with finding cheap parking on campus. Their attempts at saving money often leave them distraught upon discovering expired meters and expensive parking tickets.
Most campus parking lots are permit-only, which leaves students without permits to search, often futilely, for metered parking in and around campus. This often leads to hefty meter payments and sometimes an even more expensive ticket if the meter runs out before the car owner returns.
Although permits are somewhat costly, in essence they are the most efficient way of finding on-campus parking and reducing the risk of being ticketed. Students with parking permits have multiple lots in which to park. Some lots are available to both students and faculty, but most are student only lots. There are even lots which require a permit Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
“If I decide I want to leave my car on campus overnight, the meters are free after 5:00 p.m.,” said Annie Frederick, a freshman aerospace engineering major. “However, I have to get up at 7:30 a.m. to feed the meter, otherwise I wake up to a rather expensive blue envelope under my windshield wiper -namely a $20 parking ticket.”
CU Parking and Transportation Services Communication Manager Carol Scolari said most tickets issued are for expired meters and sometimes for cars without displayed permits. However, she also said tickets the holder believes to be unfair can be appealed, but only for legitimate reasons such as unclear signage. One ticket can be appealed twice, but overall there is no limit to the number of tickets one person can appeal.
Scolari said there is one main way for students to avoid being ticketed.
“Rely on the signs. If they’re incorrect, we’ll void a ticket. Call when you have a question,” Scolari said.
Though the current weather hazards have made parking on and around campus somewhat more difficult than when the roads are clear, Scolari said there have not been more tickets issued because of the weather.
“The enforcement staff does a really good job of being flexible,” Scolari said. “We’ve made quite a few allowances” due to the weather.
Students who want to buy a permit at this point in the year must do is go online, apply, allow a little bit of time (usually one day) for the permit to be printed and pick it up at the CU PTS office. At the beginning of each semester, students should allow about a month processing time for new permits to be acquired. There is no standing in line involved.
As for those students who don’t have permits, finding parking can be an obstacle. Many students park in residential areas on the Hill and walk to campus believing that the short walk they must endure is worth saving the money they might otherwise have spent on meters.
While Scolari said students need to be patient with parking services and abide by the rules to their best ability, the students’ opinions of campus parking is overwhelmingly conclusive.
“All in all, parking is difficult to deal with,” Frederick said. “A parking permit in itself is insanely expensive and you don’t get to pick where you get to park.”
Contact Campus Press Staff Writer Amber Klein at email@example.com.