Student caucus puts forth proposal for parking fix

Will the $5/day flat rate become a thing of the past? (File photo)

Will the $5/day flat rate become a thing of the past? (File photo)

Earlier this year, students listed parking as one of their top concerns in the TRUSU annual budget consultation. Now TRUSU’s student caucus is taking action to improve TRU’s current parking system.

In the report that followed the student budget consultation, TRUSU found 91 per cent of TRU students who had completed the survey had ranked parking among their top three concerns.

“Students cited their top concerns with parking as being price and convenience. We aim to fix both,” said Melissa Gordon, TRUSU president.

Given the amount of empty parking spots in staff parking and distant lots, Gordon believes that TRUSU’s parking proposal “makes the most sense, when considering the current parking circumstances.”

Some of the changes in the proposal include opening up staff lots to students. TRUSU has said this will make 541 more parking spaces available to students. They also want to provide by-the-hour rates in central lots.

These by-the-hour rates would be $4 for two hours, $5 for three hours and $6 for four or more hours. Distant lots and the overflow Lot N will see their prices cut down to $3 per day. Parking passes will also see their rates slashed, though this will be dependent on the lot.

Domestic students who live beyond the Kamloops transit system will be eligible to receive a 20 per cent discount on long-term parking passes, as well.

To make up for their decrease in parking rates across the board, TRUSU has proposed that long-term discounts be eliminated from parking passes and that the university extend paid parking to weekends and evenings. Rates for reserved spaces are also expected to increase.

In addition to this, Lot V, which was originally staff parking, will be turned into metered visitor parking.

Part of the fees collected, $100,000 a year, will be going towards the university’s Parking and Transportation Improvement Fund. The fund aims to help TRU make more public transportation and parking opportunities available to students in the future.

Though the proposal has been submitted to the Parking Appeals and Advisory Committee, it is still under review. Despite this, Gordon believes the proposal will be a success, given how big of an issue parking is amongst TRU students.

After their review, the committee will make recommendations directly to TRU’s VP Administration and Finance, Matt Milovick. From there, Milovick will decide on what changes will be implemented.