Students need to appreciate parking lot

Although+more+students+recently+have+begun+parking+in+the+lot%2C+it+remains+to+be+fully+taken+advantage+of.+There+are+still+plenty+of+spots+for+students%2C+should+they+decide+to+utilize+them.

Natasha Menard

Although more students recently have begun parking in the lot, it remains to be fully taken advantage of. There are still plenty of spots for students, should they decide to utilize them.

Allie Gordon, staff writer

After years of anticipation, the brand new parking lot finally opened for students at the start of this school year. With this lot, students should no longer have to park along the street or disrupt neighborhoods– yet, they still do.

According to the Lancer Link poll, students have three major concerns about the parking lot: Start Smart, searches and traffic.

Like other schools such as LCC, students must attend a Start Smart class to get a parking permit. These classes are free and taught by Officer Jim Bettencourt of the California Highway Patrol. It has nothing to do with parking: merely safe driving without distractions.

“What we’re doing with Start Smart is what most schools in North County are doing,” principal Dr. Steitz said. “It’s not something we’re doing alone.”

Bettencourt’s job requires him to be on scene for every major injury or fatal car crash in the area. He talks first-hand about the dangers of driving while under the influence of drugs, alcohol or while texting. The class only takes two hours and can only benefit students by influencing them to make safe choices.

Students can sign up for the classes on Carlsbad’s School Loop website. Be sure to pick up the permit as well, because only half the students who took the class have, and without them, the class is pointless.

“You’ll have to do it eventually,” Steitz said. “So sign up, and get it done.”

Students also worry about faculty randomly searching cars in the lot; however, clarification from Dr. Steitz busts this myth.

“We won’t randomly search anyone,” Steitz said. “You don’t do that; that doesn’t happen.”

Finally, the number one problem students face is traffic getting in and out of the lot. However, the administration is already working on solving the problem.

From now on, cars cannot turn left from Chestnut to Monroe from 2:oo p.m.-3:00 p.m. Further, the light on Monroe lengthened, a sidewalk opened for students to walk on and there are plans to paint a no-parking, loading zone from the CAC to Chestnut to keep traffic flowing.

All in all, students need to utilize the new parking lot. Their fears are widely unfounded, and with all the effort that went into the lot, it’s only sensible to take advantage of it.