Little parking helps student discover town

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A lot of students complain about never finding parking on College Way or near their classes and I do not understand why. I like to drive in circles looking for a stall and just making it to class with 30 seconds to spare, it is the best way to start my morning.

Since the Forest Grove Police Department has cracked down on parking issues this year, it has caused tension between students and officers. Students do not understand why certain stalls are two hours and others are four because it is supposed to be a college town and aren’t college towns supposed to have ample amount of parking?

From a commuter student perspective, I understand the frustration commuter students go through on a daily basis looking for a stall where they do not have move their car every two hours. But, from a civilian’s perspective, I understand the frustration business owners and locals have because there are little stalls available for them to use when trying to get coffee at places like Maggie’s Buns or Coffehouse in the Grove.

Personally, I think students need to venture through downtown Forest Grove to better familiarize themselves with the town. College students are too used to having things handed to them. Well, sorry for a ‘truth bomb,’ but that is not how the real world works.

While I make the loop through College Way and back around Main Street, I get a glimpse of what downtown Forest Grove looks like each season and since this town is so small, there is rarely any traffic through the downtown area.

These morning loops really did help me specifically pinpoint where all the shops and restaurants are. I even get to experience looking at the trees and squirrels when I have to frequently stop for students to walk across the street without looking both ways. It is so great to know that my brakes work.

When I do find parking, I then get a chance to do my morning stroll, balancing two bags on both sides of arms with my coffee. Sometimes, I am even carrying a pink umbrella, but this makes me more visible to other people driving so I do not get hit. As I get to pass Coffehouse in the Grove, Maggie’s, Tyson’s and other Forest Grove walkers, runners or bikers, I am so thrilled that I get to do this routine every morning.

As I burst into class with 30 seconds to spare, I get to debut my outfit for the day with my hair decorated with raindrops (on some days). All eyes are on me as I place my coffee on the table, drop my bags on the floor and take off my coat with rosy cheeks. This way really does help students know my name and also helps my professor to know who I am.

So, I still do not understand why students are frustrated with the current parking situation. My mornings are so great. I think the university should not do anything to increase the parking availability for students; the situation is just fine and working out great for both communities.


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