Fix our parking issues with a shuttle system, redesigning the current parking lots, more bike racks, or ANYTHING really
Parking is a huge issue for this campus. Whether you have a general or a commuter, you can never find parking and all of the lots are being taken away by new construction. I know of many students who have been absurdly late to classes because of this and I have experienced the same.
My personal experience today was the most frustrating I have experienced this far. I am a graduate student teaching a class on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11 am. Parking is an issue every week... and this week I tried to prepare for that. I arrived to campus at 10:20 giving me a spare 40 minutes to get to my class on time. I circled AA and the other lot out at Ford for 30 minutes waiting for something... along with at least 20 other cars. I finally gave up because if I didn't I would have been absurdly late to the class I was TEACHING. I parked in one of the many spots reserved for service vehicles and still showed up to my class 2 minutes late. This propagates to about 10 minutes because I have to log into the computer, pull up slides, ect. It should be no surprise that I got a ticket, even though I had no other options and the reserved spots were not even full when I went there to pick up my car. I called parking services to complain, and their solution was for me to park up at mines park. I do not feel that is an acceptable solution to this problem.
There is no way to magically make more space, believe me I understand that. However, we need to be more economical with our resources. First of all, if our lots were redesigned we could fit far more cars in the space we have available. Angled parking allows for more rows to be fit. In addition, the dirt lots have plenty of space to fit more cars, and currently if people park there they are getting ticketed. For example, the excessive amounts of reserved spots for service vehicles when I see service vehicles (such as the truck with the plow attached) taking up non reserved spots. Our commuter spots.
In addition, I would urge the school to take our moto (earth - energy - environment) to heart and consider a more sustainable and resource friendly approach to this problem. After all, we are just hypocrites if we don't practice what we preach. My first suggestion would be to provide more bike racks for people who want to bike to campus. As it stands, there are days when I bike to school and can't even find a spot to put my bike because the racks are full. In addition, a shuttle system from Mines student populated areas would be a green approach to reducing the amount of cars on the campus. For example, the population density at the golden ridge condominium complex is very highly Mines students. Most students living there drive to school because it is an inconvenient distance away and biking can be difficult for some. There is not a single RTD bus stop in that neighborhood, so we have no options to take any sort of public transit to campus. If there was a shuttle that ran once an hour (say at the :40) during high traffic times (9am - 4pm for example) students could easily take the shuttle to campus and get to classes on time. This would reduce emissions by allowing a public transit option while also reducing the amount of students driving to campus.
All of the schools that I toured had either guaranteed housing for at least 3 years or a bus route with their own school owned busses. Mines gets away with having neither.
Robert Frazier commented
Twice this semester I have been significantly late to a class simply because of how unreliable finding parking is at Mines. Usually I can arrive to park in a general lot 10 minutes before my classes. But because there are so many lot closures at this school, and just inexplicable days where parking is worse, I have had it take over half an hour to get a spot. Half an hour to find a parking spot. For a class that is 50 minutes long. Honestly I don't think this school cares enough to do anything for students who commute, which happens to be the vast majority of students. And parking services is the least helpful group of people I think I have ever seen in charge of something. Next to Mines' USG, of course.
There is an RTD route from the Jeffco station to Mines, BUT I will say when I lived at Golden Ridge, because I had to walk to the stop (which wasn't really that close), then sit on the bus, and the bus got to campus really early, if I had class at 8am, I would need to start walking at 7:15 am to make it to class. This is a 45min commute for a distance of 2 miles... so I drove most days. Also, the buses stop running early in the evening, so if you had evening activities/classes, there was no way to get back. The RTD route to campus is not adequate.