The parking problem at the University continues to persist despite the continuous efforts by the Student Council to solve the problem. Although there is an area the size of four football grounds dedicated to parking on campus, and there are 600 spaces for student parking, it is still a headache. 7,000 students have a parking permit to park on campus with their private car despite all efforts to urge them to use alternative means of transport.
The direct bus service between the Park and Ride at Pembroke and the University which was launched at the beginning of the academic year by Malta Public Transport and the Student Council does not seem to be used much even though its whole aim was to ease the problem of the lack of parking for students who use their own car.
KSU President Carla Galea told TVM that the price of €1.50 for each trip has put students off from using this service. She explained that the Government’s scheme of free public transport for University students does not apply to this service because this is considered a special service. She said, however, that the price is not the only thing which needs to change.
”One of the things which we are both suggesting is to put up more signs to indicate where you can ride this bus, provide more detailed information and promote this service better,” said Ms Galea.
TVM asked Malta Public Trasport whether they are considering carrying out changes to this service. A spokesperson for the company said that discussions with the transport authorities are underway.
Meanwhile, KSU is trying to strengthen the carpool systems so that students share their cars to go to University.
”This year we are working with Greenroads Malta who have an App called Breeze which you can download to your Smartphone. This works by finding someone else who is on your route, the driver comes to pick you and takes you to University – the system sends a message to the security guard at carpark 6 and a place is reserved for you in the morning so you do not have a problem to look around for a parking space.”
On another note related to the parking problem, KSU is using students’ parking contributions to subsidise motorcycle lessons and has also put up 20 bicycle racks to encourage students to use alternative transport to not only reduce the parking problem but also cut down on the pollution caused by private cars.