Students pay millions of dollars for parking structures | Campus News

This year alone, Cal State Fullerton students paid $ 9.8 million for their campus parking, and they are expected to spend millions more over the next decade.

The $ 9.8 million comes from the sale of approximately 39,000 half-year parking permits. Historically, CSUF is a suburban university and at least 50% of students buy parking permits every semester, according to the Ministry of Parking and Transport.

As of this semester, there are 39,868 students enrolled at CSUF and a total of 8,047 parking spaces available for students. CSUF sold 18,880 permits this semester, more than twice as many permits as there are places.

The parking permit cost $ 236 last semester, then rose to $ 285 this semester and will climb to $ 334 by the 2020 summer session, an increase of over 40% in two years. The daily parking pass will be increased from $ 8 to $ 10, and motorcycle parking permits will be increased from $ 120 to $ 140.

Campus officials justified the increase by stating that it will be used to fund the inbound parking structure on the east side of the campus, alongside the existing structure on the east side. The structure will contain 1,900 new spaces and cost $ 38.8 million, according to Sasha Azoqa, communications specialist for the parking and transportation department.

She added that each parking spot costs $ 20,000, which is used by of them to three students per day.

The new parking structure will be built north of the Eastside parking structure and is expected to be completed by fall 2020. It will include energy efficient LED lighting, elevators, staircase and a solar canopy on the roof.

The structure is meant to help alleviate parking lot overflow, a problem that has worsened over the years. However, some students expressed their dissatisfaction with the increase, acknowledging the problem of on-campus parking, but not wanting it to be paid for by students who are already facing financial hardship.

“It upsets and frustrates me because the students are already food insecure. We have homeless tenants. We can’t afford to pay for their textbooks, ”said Maria Linares, Associated Students board vice president. “Now is not the time to increase parking permit fees. “

Students opposed to increased parking permits have started a petition on the site which collected nearly 3,000 student signatures more than half of its target of 5,000 signatures. Throughout the comments section, students have expressed concern and disappointment with the increased fees.

A state audit on UHC earlier this year found that the chancellor’s office “has failed to ensure that campuses fully explore alternative transportation options before investing in expensive parking lots. The audit came months after the CSUF announced the construction of a new parking lot.

Kristen Jasko, director of the parking and transportation department, said her department has always looked for alternatives to parking, whether through third-party apps or carpooling to solve the parking problem.

The increase in parking fees supports an even greater cost: structures already built.

In the past 15 years, three parking lots have been added to the CSUF which are still in the process of being reimbursed, according to Danny Kim, Vice President of Administration and Finance.

The $ 25.7 million Nutwood parking structure is expected to be paid off by 2029, and the State College’s $ 24.7 million parking structure is expected to be paid for by 2031. Finally, the parking structure Eastside’s $ 24.9 million is expected to be paid in 2035, according to the Parking and Transportation Department.

The new structure will cost $ 2.6 million per year, bringing the total annual cost of construction bonds to $ 6.9 million, which will remain until at least 2029.

This brings the total cost of the parking structures to just over $ 114 million.

Azoqa noted that the new parking structure is “on track” in terms of development. Bomel Construction, the same contractor who built the State College parking structure, is currently building the third floor.

According to California Education Code 89700, the Department of Parking and Transportation cannot receive any state or university funding to help pay for the costs of operating or developing parking lots, forcing the department to fund itself only. .

“All construction or maintenance of the parking structure must come from the parking permit fee,” Azoqa said.

Jasko said the parking structures are typically funded by a 25-year loan that is paid back with the income from the parking permits.

The revenues from the parking permits are used directly to finance the parking operations, whether it is the operating expenses of the department, any unpaid debt service on the parking structures or simply general operating expenses, ”said Jasko.

To meet the demand for parking during the first three weeks of the school, the department launched an assisted parking program in the spring of 2017, which allowed students to park their vehicles in the aisles after the lots had been filled.

This year the “assisted parking has been placed in areas we didn’t have before, and for an extended period, ”Jasko said. This is due to the 500 parking spaces that were lost in Lot E, due to the construction of the new structure.

The program is available Monday through Thursday in lots A, G, S and Titan Hall South, with a parking attendant available until 10 p.m.

Another effort the department has made to help deal with the parking crisis is offsite parking at EvFree Church. This additional parking was offered for the first time in the spring of 2017 due to the registration record that the university faced in the fall of 2016.

Students can purchase an off-site parking permit for $ 85, with a shuttle service to and from campus available Monday through Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

“What’s really cool about this parking lot (EvFree Church) and the shuttle service is that while we have 865 students parking there regularly, we also have a lot of carpool from there,” Jasko said. “So we actually have more passengers using the shuttles than we have license holders. “

President Fram Virjee was unavailable for comment.

Noah Biesiada contributed to this article.

Tags : additional parkingparking lotsparking spacesparking structures
Deena S. Hawkins

The author Deena S. Hawkins