It’s Monday morning, your alarm didn’t go off and you have five minutes until class starts. You decide today is a great day to drive to campus, which is less than a mile away. You think you’re going to make it just in time when, bam, Evans Avenue is backed up all the way to McCarran and it’s going to take you 20 minutes to even roll into a parking lot, let alone find a parking space without risking a parking ticket.
Zac Edelen, a sophomore finance major, says he’s been late to class multiple times due to traffic jams. Once he is finally on campus, he hasn’t been able to find parking.
“I paid for a spot on campus in a silver parking lot, and I couldn’t find a place to park,” Edelen said. “By the time I got to class, my professor had locked the door and I couldn’t attend class that day.”
Jacey Gonzalez, a sophomore journalism major, drives to campus every day. As a resident of The Highlands student apartments, she has to take Evans Road on the west side of campus.
“There are always cars backed up at the stop sign at Enterprise and Evans. It is impossible to turn left at the two-way stop. Between the light at Evans and McCarran, pedestrians and other students trying to get to class, it could take up to half an hour just to get off Enterprise,” Gonzalez said.
The resolution might be simpler than building larger roads and more parking. Students suggest the university create a better transportation system for their students.
“What the campus needs is a bus system larger than two lines,” said Edelen. “The buses are overcrowded because they are so small and can’t hold as many students that are trying to use it.”
Edelen suggested that a better bus system could encourage students that live near campus not to use their cars and clear up some of the traffic.
UNR Police Services received grants worth over $60,000 combined in November 2015, according to Nevada Today. The grants aim to create programs that will keep students safe while navigating the university.
One of the programs funded by the grants is the Joining Forces Program. It combines the power of UNR Police Services and other local safety agencies to ensure safety for pedestrians and other drivers by setting up checkpoints. The goal is to lock down on impaired driving, speeding and seatbelt violations.
The Pedestrian Safety Project creates public service announcements and other advertisements to make students more cautious about their surroundings. It provides tips on how to be safe while walking around campus, such as using crosswalks, abiding by traffic laws and avoiding distracted driving.
UNR Police Services teamed up with the Nevada Office of Traffic Safety to ensure these programs are carried out in the most effective way possible.
“The university community is growing at a steady pace, and that means we deal with a number of traffic problems on a daily basis,” University Police Services Chief Adam Garcia said in an interview with Nevada Today. “Near misses between vehicles and pedestrians is one of the most common complaints.”
Madeline Purdue can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @madelinepurdue.