Parking proposal ignores students

At the most recent meeting of the Waterloo city council a proposal was presented to install pay and display machines on Bricker, Ezra and Clayfield Avenue where Laurier students frequently park.

This proposal was designed to help reduce parking infractions.

The Cord Editorial Board is deeply concerned that this proposal is a deliberate targeting of students by the city for a money grab. Councillor Diane Freeman, who strongly opposes the measure, expressed similar concern.

What is even more alarming is that this proposal comes through at a time when students have gone home for the summer, unable to provide adequate feedback to the city on the issue. Even this past meeting when the proposal was discussed occurred at a time when student representatives, including the vice-president of university affairs and the president of the Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union were away in Ottawa for a Town and Gown event. It seems that there is intent to slip this measure through the back door.

In addition to failing to receive adequate feedback, little has been done to study the affect of pay and display parking on traffic flows on each of the streets or if it’s a reasonable cost for students to pay in lieu of having a parking permit on campus.

It is preposterous to target a money grab on students without even analyzing the impact. If there ever was an issue that highlights the need for a greater student voice in municipal politics this is it. Council needs to realize that university students are here to stay, and that they form one of the pillars of the local economy. We deserve the respect of any other resident of this city.

We urge all students to make their opinions clear to city council on this issue before it is revisited on June 7. The only way for the student voice to be heard is if they become engaged in the process.

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