A brake on parking

Ontario Colleges offered a refund for students to get their tuition money. But what about parking money? Durham College is offering an extension to all monthly and permit passes. This is a great opportunity for students at Durham College to examine parking cost and space.

Parking at Durham College is stressful. It doesn’t help that every morning students are dealing with traffic that’s lined up to the street.

The parking lot is already full of cars at 10 after 8. The struggle comes down to having to park far away and walking a marathon distance to get to the school.

Then there is the cost. At Durham College, it costs $4.50 an hour to park a maximum of $14.00 dollars a day. Students are given the option to purchase a monthly pass which costs $150.00. However, there are only so many monthly passes to be given out each month.

Students can opt to buy a semester parking pass, which costs $325.00.  Parking services offers only 950 permits for students to buy.

If students are too late, the passes will be sold out and students will be placed on a waiting list. Being on the wait list could mean students may never see a semester parking pass.

Ross Carnwith is the Manager of Ancillary services at Durham College. When it comes to cost Carnwith says, “I think we are comparable to other schools.”

Here at Durham College, parking costs $4.50 per hour but parking at Algonquin, Humber, and Fanshawe costs $4.00 an hour. Seneca College in Toronto only costs $2.50 per hour with a $7.50 daily maximum. Mohawk College is more expensive with a $5.00 an hour charge for parking.

Durham College has not offered any compensation on next semester’s parking. This is not fair to students who pay over a hundred dollars a month to park.

Christane Riveiro is a student at Durham College who says she paid for a monthly pass before the labour strike began and is not getting any money back.

On the strike relief page posted by Durham College, the school gives students information on how to drop out and accept a semester tuition refund.

Any student who has a fall semester parking permit can get refunded if they choose to withdraw from their program.

The website says they will extend semester parking passes until January 15th. This will help students who bought those permits at the beginning of September. But those who bought a monthly pass and pay everyday, are not getting compensated.

Carnwith says they have extended parking for students with semester passes and monthly passes until January. They tried to give those who bought a monthly pass a deal by extending the monthly passes by five weeks.

There are still no plans for refunds or discounts on student parking.

Construction on the Simcoe parking lot and Founders Lot 5 impacted space this year but space is always an issue.

“I am always pushing for more parking,” says Carnwith. “I have put money in the budget for new parking next year but we’ll see.”

Regardless of what happens next year, a parking refund or a discount for this year will not happen.

Currently, the winter semester parking passes have been sold out and there is a wait list for students. Parking services is not allowing students to purchase a monthly pass until January. Although there is a wait list for parking passes, students will be waiting longer to find a place to park.

So, do we park this topic for now? Or should we drive this home somehow? Tweet us at @DCUOITChronicle and tell us your thoughts.