Tonight will determine whether a pilot program for paid-street parking will get put into place in La Crosse.
The measure is supposed to operate around the University of WIsconsin-La Crosse and Western Technical College.
UW-L Chancellor Joe Gow told WIZM the city never gave him a heads up that the program was coming, so he’s happy the plan is getting a review by the city council.
“I’m delighted that our students, in particular, have expressed their concerns,” Gow said, “and are working through the appropriate political process to make sure that they are listened to and hopefully the idea is reconsidered.”
Students at both schools complain they’ve been targeted by the city with the program, which was a plan to pay by phone a dollar an hour to park on certain streets.
Gow said he was never informed of the plans before they were approved by the city’s public works board.
“I think it would be preferable if we collaborated on something,” Gow said. “Particularly, what does the data show as far as how many cars are wanting to park around campus and how many spaces are typically available?”
Gow added that City Hall should have thought more about how the parking plan could disrupt neighborhoods around the two schools.
“We already hear from people that live in the neighborhoods near campus that there are too many cars there,” Gow said. “I think, if the city would go through with this plan to charge on the streets right near campus, it would push cars further into the neighborhoods, and that exasperates that problem.”
The city council is voting tonight on a resolution that would prevent the city’s parking utility from putting the pilot program into place.