PCC Ratchets Up Student Transportation Costs
The influx of bicycle commuters has had a profoundly negative impact on the financial stability of several PCC campuses including: Cascade campus and Southeast campus, as well as the CLIMB, downtown, and Metro Workforce centers.
Parking enforcement employees have swept and cleaned the surrounding neighborhoods of errant parkers unwilling to pay the $45 for a term parking pass by assigning $25 parking tickets for each failure to display a valid permit. Parking officials point out that just two tickets more than covers the cost of the term parking permit, however car commuters continue to bristle at the school’s requirement to pay to park. Students feel that it is unreasonable for the school to “nickel and dime” them for all aspects of attending PCC. Student Patrick Henry declared,
“Let me park for free or give me death!”
He was reported to have been assaulted outside of the CLIMB center by unidentified assailants wearing “Panther Pride” T-shirts.
Clever students have discovered ways of circumventing the parking issues plaguing the city campuses. Reaching back to their days of youth, some PCC students discovered that you never truly forget how to ride a bike and have made this pastime into a current commuting solution. Some are dusting off their old ten-speeds and taking to the cycling corridors of Portland in defiance of PCC’s despotic parking enforcement policies. Others lacking their own bicycles are taking advantage of a soon-to-be-axed resource, the Bicycle Hub. For just $15 per term, a third of the cost of a student term parking pass, these intrepid students are getting to their classes the breezy way.
PCC will not be phasing out the Bicycle Hub program outright: the cost of renting a bicycle will increase to the purchase price of the rental and, starting mid-Spring, hitching posts will be coin-operated. Students without access to quarters can purchase a full-term hitching pass which will require students to take selfies with their bicycle in PCC-approved cycling pants with their right pant leg cuffed to a minimum of 4 inches above the ankle. Students lacking the required cuff can appeal to parking enforcement for practice creating an argument as well as (up to) one community-based learning credit.