Photo by Brenda Lin

Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) says that in order to maintain current levels of transportation across campus, they will need to increase fees by $3 per student. The proposed increase will pay for the raise in salaries for current bus drivers. PTS also stated that an added $2 per student would add a new express route between Tech Square and Clough Commons. This small increase in fees, the first of transportation fee change in three  years, provides great promise to students and faculty, so long as current transportation standards do indeed increase.

As it stands now, both the buses and the trolley can frustrate students. The bus system’s accuracy in expected versus actual arrival times proves unreliable. Additionally, the lack of communication and awareness for when drivers are taking breaks or when buses need to be swapped out often leads to an unnecessary waste of time. As  it stands now, passengers often ignorantly wait for the driver to return.

The trolley also has capacity issues during the day, and these will only increase when University House and Square on Fifth open. With a sudden influx in traffic near the business school, there needs to be a more concentrated transportation effort from this side of campus in order to compensate appropriately.

Moreover, the fee increase could tangibly help; especially in terms of the trolley capacity. The proposed express route would open between the business school and Clough and would hopefully result in less packed trolley rides.

Looking at the transportation system now, there can only be improvement. As it stands currently, the coverage of a new trolley route is well worth the small fee, which ultimately equates to one less large latte a semester. That being said, we are looking for a marked improvement from transportation’s side, otherwise making students pay more is ultimately not worth anything.