Zipcar caters to car-less students

Albert Ramirez|Photo Editor

When it came to parking this summer, I was spoiled rotten. My “mornings” consisted of me waking at the crack of noon and arriving on campus to an open field of concrete, with nearly every spot for my choosing.

Amidst a booming growth in student enrollment, I should have known I wouldn’t snag a space so easily once classes began. But even after circling the Clark Center parking lot for the hundredth time, shaking my fist like a stubborn old man, there were two spots that I was more than happy to see filled.

After what has apparently been quite a while of quiet planning, university officials made the decision to partner up with Zipcar, starting this fall. The two Zipcar branded spaces, located on the southwest corner of the CN lot, are reserved for every student without access to a car.

I spoke with the university’s energy conservation manager, Thea Junt, who gave me the rundown on Zipcar: The service comes at no cost to the university, while students pay $8 an hour on weekdays, or $9 an hour on weekends, gas and car insurance included. Additionally, driver’s licenses from Oregon to China are accepted, meaning out-of-state, or even international, students are good to go using Zipcar.

At the moment there are only two vehicles available, a Toyota Prius and Honda Insight, but Junt assured me the university is ready to add more — assuming the student demand is there.

From what I hear, taking the bus can be a drag, and even that option isn’t available on Sundays. Our already significant international student population continues to increase at a rapid rate, and they aren’t taking cars with them. Trips to the airport or entertainment venues across Dallas can take hours using public transportation. Zipcar remedies this.

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