Chico State Students are pedaling for a cause, their mission, letting the community and Chico State officials know what they think about the new parking structure going up in their neighborhood. " I feel that Chico State is being hypocritical by building a parking structure and I'm here to protest", said Chico State student Ani Nayak.
The new parking structure was approved by school officials last April and is already under construction at the corner of Second Street and Normal Avenue. Officials say it will add 220 more spaces for students to park, but it's students who argue it's not needed. " 80 percent of students live within two miles of campus and that shows a huge potential to get those students there without a vehicle", said former Chico State student Edward Markie, Nayak adds " 76 percent of students who voted said no on an advisory measure that was put forth, that should say something".
Many students feel the structure creates a negative environmental impact and say it only encourages students to continue to drive to school rather than bike or walk. And with two more parking structures listed in the schools future master plan, they worry Chico State may start to lose it's green foot print. " We would ask them to think twice before they go ahead and build those and listen to the students", said Chico State student Melanie Markarian.
Students are suggesting alternative ideas to prevent more parking structures from being built. They say increasing bike paths, improving public transportation and increasing bike racks may help in their cause. And until they voices are heard, they say they'll continue to fight. " We're trying to regain our voice and take a stand for what we truly believe in", said Markie, " We as students can come together, we as young people have power", Nayak said. " Stand up and be heard and fight for what you believe in", added Markarian.