Lately the city has been abuzz with the news that The Collaboration Corvallis parking and traffic workgroup would be discussing a draft issued by OSU, part of which contained the suggestion of a possible ban for freshman cars on campus. This past Tuesday the panel chose to continue discussing the topic in the future – the next meeting on this topic most likely not happening until sometime in October.That doesn’t even take into account the fact that previous related initiatives are still in the pipeline from other workgroups.
Still, a drawn out process or not, history makes it clear that the fact this is even being looked at makes it something that could very well happen – the implications of which Corvallisites’ should consider well ahead of time.
At least 56 other Universities in the US have similar bans, or at least very strict regulations. Some even go so far as to ban cars for Sophomores. The trend undoubtedly has to do with growing student populations that aren’t met with similar growth in the school’s ability to expand parking capacity in a sensible way, but will it be the right option for us? Although many locals would rather see a ban such as this than another parking structure or road expansion, one must note the significant impact a move like this would have on the city transit systems – not to mention the fact that Corvallis has yet to implement a stable system of bikeways to compensate for what would surely be increased bike traffic in the campus area.
OSU’s draft does suggest a look at bicycle and pedestrian routes as well as related safety issues, but that seems up front a little light-handed considering at the estimate for 2013 puts the total number of freshman at 3,465.
If this does indeed move forward, how will it affect freshman in need of vehicular transportation for work and others purposes, considering that they are now required to live on campus? The human factor will undoubtedly be considered within the panel, however as aforementioned, there have been at least 56 other similar panels across the country to shrug it off in favor of the snap-of-the-fingers parking throttle it releases.
To field a question directly to The Collaboration Corvallis parking and traffic workgroup, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Their recommendations will be heard by a committee dedicated towards dealing with OSU growth in the coming months, although any actionable consequence will be under the express control of Corvallis City Council as well as OSU Leadership.
By Johnny Beaver