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Increase In Montclair State Students Lead to More Traffic Problems

by Meagan Kane

As traffic builds up on Montclair State University’s campus, students begin to notice a concern between the high acceptance rate and the delays in transportation.

Montclair State has a current acceptance rate of 91 percent and with more freshmen being accepted, more cars are expected to be on campus. This also shows that more students need to take the shuttle and grab parking spots.

People wait in the cold for various buses. Photo courtesy of Allen Macaraeg

People wait in the cold for various buses. Allen Macaraeg | The Montclarion

Students have come across several struggles when it comes to transportation at Montclair State. Some of these include finding parking, catching traffic and delays in shuttle services.

Brandon Levine, a junior psychology major, explains how he cannot park his car in the Red Hawk Deck due to the lot reaching capacity fairly quickly.

Brandon Levine, junior psych major. Photo courtesy of Allen Macaraeg

Brandon Levine, junior psychology major. Allen Macaraeg | The Montclarion

“I don’t think I can keep [my car] at the Red Hawk Deck because it’s like constantly full,” Levine said. “And I think it’s more of just like how many students we have here, like I know that’s a big thing that I’ve heard from everyone that we’ve over-admitted students. I just think that that’s where it stems from too.”

Levine also shared how he does not take the shuttle due to its delays.

“I mean I don’t take the shuttle from [Frank] Sinatra [Hall] either because that isn’t on time,” Levine said. “I feel as though that’s more of a problem because you know traffic.”

Donavan Angel, a freshman history major, shares that traffic is an issue for him when it comes to commuting.

Donavan Angel, freshman history major. Photo courtesy of Allen Macaraeg

Donavan Angel, freshman history major. Allen Macaraeg | The Montclarion

“Well traffic is usually like pretty bad,” Angel said. “I commute from about 30 minutes away and it ends up being an hour because of parkway traffic.”

Scott Nayda Sr., director of parking services, recognizes the increase in traffic since COVID-19.

“I can tell you and I’m sure we all know traffic has increased on campus,” Nayda Sr. said. “A lot less people work [remotely] and more [so work] in-person, so more people back into the workforce, going into the office is going to create more traffic.”

Nayda Sr. also mentioned the increase in student population causing traffic.

“We have an increase in student population on campus and commuters, so the answers are probably ‘Yes,’ post-COVID our numbers have increased.”

The Montclair State Police Department advises commuters to give themselves time to get to campus to avoid traffic.

“To avoid traffic congestion at Montclair State, allow yourself plenty of time for your commute, especially during morning, mid-afternoon and early evening hours,” the University Police article said.”These times are when many classes commence or end and when the influx of traffic occurs on campus. Use common sense and extend courtesy to pedestrians and other motorists while you drive, and use public transportation when possible.‌”

Angel explains that parking is not the best once he arrives for classes.

“Parking is not the best,” Angel said. “It could be better. I usually just get here a little bit earlier though and then it’s fine, but generally around 9:30 [a.m.], especially in Car Parc Diem, there’s never anything and I usually am late because of that.”

Student Services suggests leaving cars at home and using mass transit to avoid traffic and parking issues.

“Consider leaving your car at home and try using public transit,” the Student Services article said. “Montclair State is situated between two train stations and is served by multiple bus lines; this makes public transit an easy and environmentally-friendly choice.”

Ashley Chirino, a junior political science major, says parking got worse over the years.

Ashley Chirino, junior political science major. Photo courtesy of Allen Macaraeg

Ashley Chirino, junior political science major. Allen Macaraeg | The Montclarion

“I feel like it got worse,” Chirino said. “I feel like the last two years you can find parking in the morning and then now it’s just so packed.”

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