Parking has continued to be a problem for Rider students. The administration has taken steps to help ease the issue on the Westminster campus. However, neighbors who live around that campus have some concerns about what a new parking lot will mean for them.
On Thursday, Feb. 18, Rider went before the Princeton Regional Planning Board for the second time on the issue. Last time, area residents’ protests seemed to catch us unprepared. This time, Rider was ready.
The main worries on Thursday were that lights and noise in the parking lot would disturb the small community, and that houses will be flooded when excess rain comes off the lot. This time, Rider had thought through every angle and had answers for all pending questions.
Rider’s original plan had been revised to accommodate neighbors’ needs. The parking lot was pushed back farther from the nearest houses, and trees and catch basins will be built to block out lights and noise, and hold extra rain. Rider definitely deserves praise for taking the neighbors’ requests into consideration. The school could have been totally selfish and done only what was required in order to be approved. We realized that the neighborhood is home to more than just us.
Some are curious as to how Rider will pay to keep the new parking lot maintained and want to know where the money is coming from. Finances should go where they are needed most, and right now, that includes parking.
“We are bursting at the seams,” Dean Robert Annis said. “We need parking and that parking is necessary to maintain the quality and vitality of our campus.”
The Westminster parking situation is a serious problem. Anyone with a car takes a risk of parking illegally in the street or on the grass if he or she doesn’t get there at the right time.
Even though this new lot is being built, it is only a temporary solution to the parking problem. It has been estimated that the Westminster campus needs about 444 spots, and this new lot will only bring the total spots to a guaranteed 356. Rider is to be commended for its foresight and careful preparation in getting the new lot approved. Hopefully, in the future, Rider will be able to give the Westminster campus even more parking spaces and remain a good neighbor to the community.
This weekly editorial expresses the majority opinion of The Rider News editorial board and is written by the Opinion Editor, Angelique Lee.