Disastrous Parking and Transit at Kwantlen Polytechnic University

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The purpose of this petition is to propose KPU board of governors to implement new policies that better reflect the needs of students; review the compass card program and its necessity; review their current contract with Impark and update parking rates to match the rates offered by other institutions.

To begin with, according to a recent internet survey, 62% of students never use their compass cards. Therefore, TransLink collects thousands of dollars for unused services by a mandatory program, and students are taking the hit for it. Many students have part-time or full-time jobs to keep up with the increasing cost of tuition, books and to support themselves. Moreover, many of these students require a reliable source of transportation to get them to work and then to school; therefore they need a vehicle. Even so, these students must pay $459.00 per year towards a service they never use - it is senseless and unfair, especially since a high number of students (62%) do not to use their compass cards.

Second, students at Kwantlen Polytechnic University believe students should not have to pay current Impark rates to park their vehicles on campus. Many students stress about the parking policy, however, do not talk or complain about it because they do not know how to fight the system. These students struggle to pay tuition and other expenses; they should not have to worry about parking rates. Further, in a students effort to avoid parking fees, parking rates have and continue to influence a student’s decision to attend: classes, extra-curricular activities, the library to conduct research, and or to free seminars.

Furthermore, did you know a KPU student pays nearly double the parking rates when compared to Douglas College, Langara College, and the University of the Fraser Valley. The information below details the rates each university requires its students to pay for parking and passes.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University: $1.00 for 30 minutes; $5.00 all day; $16.00 for weekly pass; $58.00 for a monthly pass; $190.00 for a semester pass and $440.00 for an annual pass.

University of the Fraser Valley: $0.50 for 15 minutes; $1.00 for each 2-hour period; $4.00 for all day; $13.00 for a weekly pass, $52.00 for a monthly pass, and $160.00 for a semester pass.

Douglas College: $1.00 for each 1-hour period; $3.50 until 6 PM; $1.50 flat rate after 6 PM and $90.00 (min 6 credits) semester pass.

Langara College: $1.50 for each 30 mins; $3.50 for each 4-hour period; $7.00 for all day; $3.50 after 5 PM and $3.50 flat rate for evenings and weekends.

As can be seen from the above summary, KPU students pay almost double the amounts, yet, they receive the same service from Impark as its neighbouring institutions. Since other institutions were able to negotiate better rates for their students, it does not seem impossible for KPU to do the same for their students, and it is not unreasonable for us to ask.

According to KPU’s Report to the board of governors (September 2016 version), KPU’s five-year contract was due to expire June 30, 2017, and a review of this contract was supposed to be completed by September 30, 2016. One of the objectives of the study was to examine the pricing structure for the parking passes.

Third, for students who use their compass cards, or have used it in the past have been witness to the poor services provided by TransLink. An internet survey indicates reasons why students are dissatisfied with the service, and the impact the poor service has had on them. Of the 125 responses received, a decent number of students (21%) have experienced buses not stopping because it was at full capacity. Equally important, 27% indicated they were late to a lecture or an exam (where they were not provided extra time) because their bus arrived late.

Unreliable and inconsistent bus service is a significant disadvantage among students who rely on public transportation to get them to and from class on time, as such; it should be unacceptable for TransLink to continue to provide poor services to students who pay for the compass card. In addition to them into the program, students not using the service, are also are paying thousands of dollars to TransLink to support the same program; therefore the service delivery should be lacking and must improve.

We demand the following:

comparable parking rates;

a flat rate for evenings and weekends;

an option to opt out of the compass card program; or

earn credits from it to use towards parking fees

A more consistent and reliable service from TransLink (i.e., access to better bus routes)

Please support this initiative and sign the petition, so KPU board of governors are aware of the number of students who are dissatisfied with the poor choices made for them by KPU.

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