LOOKING FINE: Parking off campus could cost you

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BY KAILA VETSCH

For those who don’t live on campus, parking is an issue.  Finding where to park close to campus is one thing. Finding somewhere to park legally is another.  

Ticketing is relatively common for off-campus parking. In 2011 alone the Brookings police issued 4,636 parking tickets. Last year, after complaints from Brookings residents, the police department hired an officer to monitor parking. Students who live off campus park on the outskirts of campus because it is convenient and because there is a lack of available parking on campus.

When asked about buying a campus parking permit, SDSU junior Kasey Haas said, “There’s not enough parking in general. I drive from my house and still have to park three blocks away. They sell more passes than they have spots, so it’s not worth it.”

Haas also mentioned the off-campus residents who take their chances and park illegally on campus because it’s just as risky and much more convenient.

“In prior years I have parked on the side streets and there always seems to be an extra law they have hidden from you at how far you can park from this sign or that sidewalk,” said senior Barry Davis. “So I usually chose to stay away from side street parking.”

For those who take the risk of parking off-campus, there are a number of rules that are not well known and can often catch students off guard. Many of the “no-park” zones are marked with yellow paint, but some are not. Brookings’ Code of Ordinances states that there is not a requirement to have a sign stating prohibitions. This means that if a ticket is issued without warning, it may still be legal by Brookings law.

“It’s an educational process, and unfortunately for those students who come from places to campus, the education is through the ticketing. We do the best we can to enforce the city ordinances equally and fairly,” said Brookings Chief of Police Jeff Miller. He made note that they do try and make those ordinances available to be viewed.

As the campus continues to grow with the expectation of more students, there needs to be parking to accommodate them. There has been expansion on the southeast parking lot, but students are unwilling to pay for a permit when it is no more convenient than parking on a side street. The best way for students to be able to park off campus and not be fined is to know the rules that aren’t clearly marked.

PARKING: BROOKINGS ORDINANCES

According to Brookings ordinance you cannot park:

(1) In front of a public or private driveway, closer than five feet on either side of a driveway measured from the edge of the driveway at the curb line or edge of the roadway.

(2) Within 15 feet of a fire hydrant;

(3) Within 20 feet of a crosswalk at an intersection;

(4) Within 30 feet upon the approach to any flashing signals, stop sign, yield sign or traffic control signal located at the side of a roadway;

(5) Within 20 feet of the driveway entrance to any fire station nor on the side of a street opposite the entrance to any fire station within 75 feet of such entrance when properly signposted;

(6) At any place where official signs prohibit standing;

(7) Within 50 feet of the nearest rail of a railroad crossing;

(8) In public alleys;

(9) Anywhere for more than 72 hours.