The (parking) problem that won’t go away

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By Monique Larkin

By Monique Larkin

Parking at RCC is ridiculous.

Every year that I have been at RCC, the parking situation increasingly gets worse, especially during the first week of classes.

I have tried to prepare myself nonetheless for this necessary evil of finding such a simple thing as a single parking spot. Granted, in the three years I have attended RCC, I have never had a problem personally, I have religiously left early from my house.

I recently moved into the Plum Tree Apartments on Olivewood, which is at the back side of RCC, next to the 91 freeway. While considering the apartment, I thought to myself, great, since I live so close, I can walk to school, and not have to worry about spending an hour in the “parking hell.”

The first two months of living in the Olivewood apartments went without incident, and when I came home one morning during the first week of class, I thought I was going to put my brilliant realization of walking to school to work. But when I arrived at my apartment, I could not find a single parking space on the entire street of Boxwood, much less anywhere in front of my apartment. I didn’t want to double park out of fear of my own car being towed.

Since I could not park anywhere near my apartment or RCC without a 30-minute walk back to my apartment, I decided to do some of my own homework and I took a drive around RCC’s surrounding neighborhoods. I wanted to find out if they had the same problem.

Now the street, Ramona, which is about 200 feet from my apartments, has its light poles littered with “No parking” signs or “Permit parking only” signs posted. So that means no one is allowed to park there from 8a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays unless you are a resident, Keep this in mind; residents get their own permit. Then, I took a drive past the little Presbyterian Church, which is on Terracina, which is the street that is on the front side of RCC and Central Middle School. This street also has its own “No Parking” signs placed on its elusive light poles and once again also in the residential areas surrounding the middle school. On the other hand, the church had its own price for parking for RCC students, $1.

I then took my blue automobile down to the baseball field, which is also a “student parking by permit only” parking lot. Then, I got to thinking, there are a lot of little league baseball games that go on down here, so what does the public pay? That is, if they pay anything. And if they do not have that red sticker, are they ticketed, too?

After I considered the entirety of my situation and acknowledged that none of the other surrounding neighborhoods had my neighborhood’s problem, I drove back home. There was still no parking in the place where what I pay quadruples the cost of an RCC parking permit.

Why, after all of these years, has no one taken action against this? I will not hesitate to guess that this has been a reoccurring problem for the residents of these apartments, and now me. Why are there no parking restrictions placed on our obvious light poles just like in any other neighborhood that surrounds RCC?

It’s not like people don’t know that these apartments exist. I have heard several times now and prior to me living in them that if someone can’t find parking at RCC, they will just go park in the apartments on the back side of RCC.

That is a little revolting. Would you like someone parking on your street who does not reside where you reside to park in a spot so that you couldn’t park? I’m guessing no.

I don’t blame the students, I blame RCC because it sells more parking permits than there are parking spaces. Do college officials even care if a student parks in a non-restricted area? I am going to guess no. They feel it is not their responsibility.

Well, I am here to tell you that if I can’t find a parking spot at my apartments, I am probably not the only one.

Guaranteed, the neigh-borhood that I live in may not be as “affluent” as the surrounding neighbors, but I supported Measure “C.”

So let me sock it to RCC and local authorities, to give back to its hard-working community. Install some parking restrictions for the last, but certainly not least neighborhood, which surrounds RCC, please.

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