Further Construction to Limit University Parking

With construction for a new housing building underway, students will face a semester with less parking.


Monica Tamayo, Contributing Writer

On December 17, Parking and Transportation services temporarily displaced 800 parking spots in parking lot 7. According to university officials, a new housing project is being built on lot 7, which is set to be completed by Fall 2021. The new housing east complex will feature an 8-story traditional style building with a dining hall, dedicated for approximately 1,200 freshman and sophomore students.


The University currently offers four parking lots and four parking structures for its students; two of those parking lots are currently facing construction. In addition to the loss of 800 parking spaces from lot 7, the University closed half of parking lot 5 in March 2018 in order to begin construction on parking structure E, which is set to open in fall 2019.


For many students, parking lot 7 was used as a last resort when searching for a spot throughout the semester. With fewer parking spaces available for this semester, many students are concerned. The construction on lot 7 not only affects University commuters, but housing residents as well, as spaces from the housing lot have also been lost.


“The price for a residential parking permit is ridiculous compared to regular commuters. I don’t think it’s fair for us residents to be paying more money when we are getting way less space now,” said Ronald Cruz, a third year resident.


According to Parking Operations Manager, John Orr, approximately “10,000 student permits were sold last semester, which is about the same as what was sold in Spring 2018.”


Emails were sent over the winter break informing students about the temporarily displaced parking spots in lot 7. Those spaces will not return, however they will be gained back in parking structure E, which will have a total of 2,200 spaces available. In order to help ease the chaos of parking during the Spring semester, Parking and Transportation services have developed a plan to offer  free valet-assisted parking in structures A, as well as the available areas in lots 5 and 7.


Another temporary solution is to use the off-site lot. This semester there will be more shuttles traveling to and from campus along with expanded hours of availability from 7am-10pm. The University has also suggested for commuters to take public transportation; however, for some, public transportation is not the best way to get to and from campus.


“I can’t use other modes of transportation because that would take most of my day from Santa Barbara. I’m always on the go and can’t be waiting for a shuttle to take me to my car to begin my long commute from being at school all day,” said Business Administration student Angel Vasquez.


Students who have any concerns or questions regarding the parking situation can contact Parking and Transportation services at (323)- 343-6118 Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm.