Year after year at California Baptist University, the number of incoming students increases, which means an increased need for parking.
This year, more than 1,800 new students have joined the Lancer Nation, and as a result, the school has worked to add more than 650 parking spots at the Health Science Campus on Monroe Street to help remedy the problem.
CBU offers parking permits for resident and commuter students with designated areas for each living area, however, the increase in students and their vehicles has made finding an empty spot a challenge.
The spaces at the Health Science Campus are for faculty and commuter students currently enrolled in either a health science program or the architecture program. The parking lot was built using unused sports fields that were originally part of Riverside Christian School.
Steve Smith, director of Facilities and Planning Services, said their office frequently assesses the amount of parking compared to the number of students and faculty on campus.
As the student population increases, available parking must also increase, and the addition of the new Health Science parking spaces are anticipated to help resolve the issue.
Luke Meeter, senior anthropology major, said he commutes daily and has experienced the parking struggle.
“Parking has been an issue in the past,” Meeter said. “I usually have to arrive extra early just to make sure I can get a parking spot.”
Darius Fatherree, sophomore Christian studies major, also commutes and knows the difficulty that has arisen from limited parking spaces.
“There was one time when public safety blocked off the main area because it was full,” he said. “I ended up having to park on the streets. Even the spaces by the gym were full.”
Smith said creating the new parking spaces has not been easy. The underlying structure posed a challenge. A pipeline runs underneath the field that was converted into the parking spaces, making construction more complicated.
“This field area is very unique in that a very large Metropolitan Water District pipeline dissects the area diagonally,” Smith said. “As such, the parking area had to be constructed with some very challenging guidelines and specifications.”
The parking lot opened Sept. 6.