Palomar may educate thousands of students, but several agree that parking is a major issue on campus, as the campus closes one of the utilized parking areas.
Students who were avid users of the dirt parking lot located next to the Chevron will now have to reroute to a different location as the lot has closed, effective Sept. 13, according to Laura Gropen of Palomar’s Public Affairs Office.
“It’s closed in part because of the dirt and the drought. In order to keep it open and well maintained, it would require daily watering,” Gropen said.
While the dirt lot may have closed, Gropen insisted students have ample space to use for alternatives.
“While students have to reroute from lot 12 as it is full, parking lots three, five, and nine are all available for student use,” said Gropen when discussing alternative student parking areas.
The campus has no plans to reopen the dirt lot as parking lot 14 was recently reviewed and approved as additional student parking space.
“The (dirt) parking lot was open for the first couple weeks of classes, but is now closed in order to be a good neighbor to the areas surrounding the lot. Parking lot 14 has been assessed and approved for student overflow parking,” Gropen said.
In addition to the space made available by parking lot 14, the new parking structure, which will arrive in the coming semesters will benefit both Palomar’s faculty and students by opening up an influx of space.
Palomar students seem to be in favor of the upcoming parking structure.
“The parking here at Palomar is really a struggle… I think we need parking structures here,” said Student Anna Hedberg-Jensen.
Hedberg-Jensen also offered up an alternative she wishes the campus would take into consideration during the waiting period for the new parking structure.
“I also think we should make a designated area with larger parking spaces for trucks, vans, and SUVs so that they can’t squeeze into a spot and accidentally door ding you,” Hedberg-Jensen said.
It seems the parking structure, which won’t break ground until 2017, according to Gropen, is an aspect of campus that several students agree upon.
Student Olivia De Lisser also weighed in on the issue of parking on campus, and shared a way for students to avoid many parking issues.
A parking structure “would help…the only thing that saves me at Palomar is (my) early morning class, so parking is not so bad,” De Lisser said.
A third student, Mike Sparacio, who also works on campus shared his input in regards to the parking situation on campus.
“We need to expedite the parking garage. With this construction it has eliminated staff and student parking” admits Sparacio.
The parking situation is clearly an issue, and several students have voiced their opinions and shed light on their own experiences.