Louie Villanueva

The Brief: June 5, 2014

 

Bike parking now open in the basement of the Art Parkade

New parking for bicycles in the southeast corner of the Art Parkade is open for students who get to campus on two wheels instead of four.

The lot has 54 racks and will cost $30 per year for a spot, according to University of Calgary Parking and Transportation Services.

Students’ Union vice-president operations and financeAdam Swertz said the fee is meant to cover revenue the U of C will lose in parking fees, as the area takes up several of the Art Parkade’s parking stalls.

“I was honestly impressed the university would charge such a low rate. Thirty dollars for the whole year sounds remarkable to me,” Swertz said.

Director of ancillary services Voula Cocolakis said the bike parkade will help the university accommodate the increasing number of people cycling to campus.

“People are looking for alternative ways to get to campus and biking is becoming more and more popular,” Cocolakis said. “[The area] is an option for students to consider.”

When the lot opens, it will be accessible with an electronic access card that students can pick up from the Parking and Transportation Services office near McMahon stadium.

Campus Security believes the area will be a popular option for cyclists worried about bike theft.

Since 2011, 84 bikes have been reported stolen at the U of C. Almost half of those were in 2013.

Campus Security estimates $34,000 worth of bikes have been stolen in that time.

Campus Security officer Chris Ward said they are working on a project that will inform students on how to prevent bike theft.

Cocolakis said she sees more bike parking at the Foothills campus being installed in the future.

“Once we get a better feel for demand and usage, we will plan accordingly,” Cocolakis said.

Art Parkade bike parking entered a trial period this summer and will begin renting out stalls in the fall semester.

University upgrades weak campus Wi-Fi

A review of the University of Calgary’s Wi-Fi shows that only the Taylor Family Digital Library and the Energy Environment Experiential Learning buildings have reliable access to the university’s Internet signal.

Students’ Union president Jarett Henry said Campus Information Technologies sent out a survey about Wi-Fi after they recognized the need to address the poor signal on the rest of campus.

Campus IT will first address Wi-Fi in MacHall.

Short-term upgrades will be funded by the SU’s Quality Money program, which approved $180,000 for the project. Long-term Wi-Fi fixes will be funded through campus IT.

“A big success is that Campus IT received funding this year from the university to address growing infrastructure problems and wireless Internet on campus. They’re actually undertaking a long-term plan to renovate all the spaces on campus. So they won’t be needing the Quality Money Program we initially thought might be an option for them,” Henry said.

Renovations are slated to finish in September.

“I think it affects both student life and our ability to succeed in our academics. And I think it’s important for the reputation of the university as well,” Henry said.

 

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