Your Voice: THS parking in neighborhoods
Jan 31, 2014 | 11747 views | 21 21 comments | 229 229 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Tracy Press received an overwhelming amount of letters to the editor in response to our article, "Council moves to curb traffic near Tracy High." We have published here every letter about the issue. If you wish to respond, send a letter to the editor of no more than 300 words to tpletters@tracypress.com.

EDITOR,

Have you heard about Tracy High students’ perspectives with the parking issue? I am writing this letter to express my thoughts on your article “Council moves to curb traffic near Tracy High,” because I thought it is necessary for you to have students’ perspectives. If I were a resident at any other city and would have read about this issue, I’d actually agree to the permit idea because only the residents’ side is talked about, but since I am a student, and I know both sides of the story, I am against it. If the permit gets passed, what happens to all the students that don’t have anywhere else to park? The students who park on those neighborhood streets don’t really have a choice. There is not enough parking lots for all the students that drive at Tracy High. If there is not enough space to park in the school, where else can we park? The only other choice we’d really have is start parking by Lincoln Park and the other neighborhoods. Or start walking or taking bikes, but most students that drive live about an hour away walking. Then the school would have to take in mind there will be many more tardiness. We the students are part of this community as well, and that must be taken in consideration.

Daniella Santana, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am writing to you on behalf of the students at Tracy High. You have recently addressed an issue with the parking at the high school, but failed to include the views of the students. I’m a senior at Tracy High and have been driving to school for the past two years. Every day I have to leave my house at 7:20 a.m. to get to school around 7:30 in hope of finding a parking spot. I don’t know anyone who aims to park in the neighborhoods. Our cars also get vandalized; not to mention I have had friends receive vulgar notes because they had parked in front of a resident’s home. We students have recently gotten the parking lot at City Hall taken away, restricting our parking even more. If you think that we enjoy getting to school 40 minutes before it starts just so we can park our cars, you’re sadly mistaken. If the city does decide to enforce parking permits, where are we supposed to put our cars when we arrive at school and there is no space left for us to park? It seems to me that applying parking permits would only cause more problems. So, what I would like to see happen is the neighborhoods kept open to the public. Considering it is a public street, it is unfair to decide who the “public” is. The people who live in the neighborhoods knew very well that they were moving to a high school.

Kelly Brooks, Tracy

EDITOR,

Parking at Tracy High has been a problem long before 12th street and Berverdor Avenue began their efforts to halt all parking from the students. In a school of over 2000, and a time of increasing sophomore drivers, many students require cars to get to and from school. However, with the limited spaces available at Tracy High, many students take to parking in the closest possible legal area as to not be late to school. These necessary areas were almost solely covered by the abundant parking amongst the City Council parking lot and the neighborhoods. As of late last year, construction began on the drama theater, which occupied usable parking spots that students relied on. Soon after that, City Council threatened students at Tracy High to ticket and tow their car if it is left in their parking lot. The final blow came when the petition to start a permit parking on 12th street and Berverdor Avenue during school hours was brought to City Council. With the support of the permit parking, Tracy High students will have no choice but to find some other street close by to park on. This permit parking idea is just a Band-Aid to the city’s parking conundrum. The residents are completely right for wanting action, but they are taking it out on the wrong people. If someone is to blame, it is the Tracy Unified School District for not taking action sooner. My solution of a long-term parking fix is to postpone the permit parking until the beginning of the school year next year, in order to give the TUSD time to create some way to alleviate traffic and parking at Tracy High School.

Dalton Gualco, Tracy

EDITOR,

My name is Lindsey Raaker, currently a senior at Tracy High School. For as long as I've attended THS, parking has always been a problem due to the lack of parking spaces mixed with the surplus of licensed students. Typically around January, the lots get more crowded because sophomores start to get their licenses and other licensed students start driving because they recently got cars for holidays or birthdays. Usually about this time, you start having to arrive at school at 7:35 to get a space in the parking facilities. Recently it’s only gotten worse because of the uproar with the neighborhoods. Parking has always been an issue and losing this parking facility is a huge detriment, so this is why TUSD needs to find a solution. I believe that driving is a privilege, not a right. TUSD should enforce parking permits for the THS lots. This permit should be allowed for upperclassmen only with a 2.0 GPA or higher and a maximum of 20 Saturday school hours. This will motivate students to do better in school and to get down their hours. Another idea is to reward students who carpool by giving them prime parking spots, so it will motivate people to carpool to cut down the traffic. Also, another parking facility should be added, whether it's over near Ag area or over in the Heinz factory. In conclusion, TUSD needs to take a stand for its students so that we have the ability to park somewhere.

Lindsey Raaker, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am writing in response to your article in the Tracy Press on Jan. 24 regarding the problem of traffic and parking on the streets adjacent to Tracy High School. I am a senior and drive daily to school. If I am not at school by 7:30 a.m., there will be no parking on campus. We are not allowed to park in any of the adjacent businesses or the city parking lot, causing overflow to the neighborhood. The majority of students at Tracy High are respectful of the neighborhood and would not be parking in front of the houses if we had options. This has been a problem for my four years, and after talking with my parents and grandparents, it has been a problem for the past 45 years. I live on the same block as a school and understand the frustration of no parking and trash on your lawn. However, the street is public and parking should not be restricted. Is the City Council prepared to set up parking permit zones for all neighborhoods with a school? A solution to the broken mirrors and dented doors would be for the City Council to make the narrow streets adjacent Tracy High one way. They really are not wide enough for parking on both sides of the street and two-way traffic. Another solution would be for the city and Tracy public schools to build a multilevel parking garage for Tracy High students. People who buy houses adjacent to schools should be prepared for traffic and students parking on the street.

Kaiya Jacobs, Tracy

EDITOR,

As a senior that drives to school at Tracy High School, I can only begin to understand the daily frustration of the adjacent neighborhood residents. Though I do see where they are coming from, they too should start to see the students’ perspective. Due to current construction and renovations at Tracy High, and the Tracy Civic Center promising to tow any student cars that park there during school hours, student parking has become extremely limited. Now we are faced with the “Box,” the A-Building parking lot and the neighborhoods. But creating parking permits in the residents’ areas will not solve the growing problem. In my opinion, I think it will only make it worse. I agree with the council members that this is a TUSD problem and that they should have foreseen this issue and taken action to prevent us from where we are now. So, I think the TUSD and the Tracy City Council members need to talk to the Tracy Civic Center and convince them to allow the students to park there temporarily. Then, TUSD needs to start making plans to expand the student parking on the campus, to match the other local high schools, such as West and Kimball. This should help with the problem in the long-time run. As for the constant disrespect that the residents are facing with the students: The school can play an important role in alleviating this problem by controlling the students’ off-campus privileges. The littering of the residents’ lawns mostly happens during lunchtime hours. If the school were to threaten the students’ off-campus passes and other severe consequences, then the residents’ complaints would be taken care of. I know I am tired of feeling stressed and nervous every time I cannot find parking on the school’s campus, and many others can only agree with me. This ongoing battle between the school, residents and city can only be stopped through compromise.

Devra Asah, Tracy

EDITOR,

I want to address the Tracy High School student parking issue. Students are parking in the neighborhoods due to a lack of on-campus parking and the people residing in nearby neighborhoods are complaining of too much disruption before, after and during school hours. I can sympathize with the residents because I do understand there are some students that can be quite disruptive and disrespectful of others’ properties. At the same time the residents should have been aware of the implications of living so close to an establishment filled with teenagers. I understand and appreciate that driving is a privilege. There are many students like myself that need to drive ourselves to school due to lack of other means of transportation. Issuing parking permits would not be considered a win-win situation. Being forced to park farther away from the school will surely increase the daily tardiness and could lead to more trouble for both students and residents. I am not implying that students should be allowed to misbehave, but I do not believe the majority should be punished for the minority. Only the “troublemakers” should be confronted and banned from parking in the neighborhoods. I believe that we should be allowed to park in the neighborhoods until the city can find a resolution for additional parking on or near the school. Thank you for your time and attention concerning this matter.

Serenna Williams, Tracy

EDITOR,

As a concerned student of Tracy High, I oppose the parking ordinance that is being posed on 12th and Berverdor Avenue. As a person that knows the parking situation at Tracy High, I find that parking becomes scarce around 7:30 in the morning and making the residential area the last resort. Along with a growing population of young drivers every year and less parking spots, due to construction, the situation has only been exacerbated. If the City Council restricts parking from that area, then students have nowhere else to park. Students cannot park near City Hall or near the Tracy Police Department for fear of parking tickets. There are absolutely no more parking spots to accommodate Tracy High students. So what options do students have left? None. In a way, this will obstruct the students’ right to education by forcing them to park in areas where they could be ticketed. Tracy High School and its students and staff have been part of Tracy’s community for decades; we have the right to be heard as well. Instead of being vilified by the media and residents, as a “community,” we should come to a compromise that will satisfy both residents and students. I believe that the City Council should halt the permit and try to find a solution during the summer, whether that be allowing students to park near City Hall or building/opening new parking lots for students to use.

Brandon Tan, Tracy

EDITOR,

As a Tracy High student who parks in the neighborhoods, I can see the frustration of some of the residents with the overcrowded streets. But not once did your article mention a student’s perspective on what is going on with parking as well. Getting to school at 7:30 a.m., there are barely any parking spots left, and as more and more students start driving, the parking lot is filling up quicker, we have sophomores, juniors, and seniors all fighting to get parking spots. In your article you interviewed the residence of the neighborhood, and they constantly stated how “disrespectful” we are being, but not once did they mention how they acted toward us. I parked in the neighborhood with one of my friends, in a normal parking spot along the curb, and as we started walking back on campus a lady started screaming at us saying we couldn’t parked there, when there was no red blocking off that part of the curb or anything. So we then went back and checked and we were not breaking any rules, so we then walked by her a second time and she kept saying how “disrespectful” students are, harassing my friend and I halfway down the street. If I had the choice, I would not park in the neighborhoods for the issue, but I have no choice and neither does any other Tracy High student when the parking lot is full, because there are a lot more students driving than parking available. The neighborhood residents also need to realize they live next to a school and there is not anything us students can do about the small number of parking available. With 439 juniors and 495 seniors and limited parking availability, this has not only become a problem for the neighborhood but the students as well.

Ashley Diaz, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am currently a senior at Tracy High School. It has come to my attention that a problem regarding to student parking near residential area has arisen. One can argue that this is the disrespectful students parking near these homes. However, I believe that the school district, Tracy High School and the city of Tracy are responsible for this. I think that having a high school near a condensed area of houses, several businesses and a city hall is not very smart. I have also noticed that on the corner of 11th and MacArthur, there has been a piece of land with nothing on it for several years. It would be amazing if they made that into parking so that students could park there.

Cristian Ramos, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am writing to voice my opinion about the recent traffic issue at Tracy High School and the neighborhoods surrounding it. This issue is important to me because I'm a senior at Tracy High. I am one of the many students that parks on East 12th Street and Berverdor Avenue every day. I park there because there is an insufficient amount of parking on our campus due to constant construction. What a lot of people don't understand is that for many of us students, the neighborhoods are the only place we can park. We don't have nearly enough parking spots for everyone. I strongly disagree with the actions of the City Council in planning a trial for permit parking. Students would have nowhere to park if that were to happen. For many of us, like myself, our cars are the only way that we can get to school. A majority of us have siblings to take to school as well. Therefore, we simply cannot just refrain from driving to school because of the lack of parking available to us. Also, if that plan were to be put into action, it would be very difficult for students to arrive to school on time. This parking issue has been around for quite some time. I think it would be best if the City Council were to hold off on the parking permits and allow the district enough time to make other arrangements for the thousands of students that will be affected by this.

Purnima Mahabali, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am currently a senior at Tracy High school and I am just as concerned as everyone else about the parking situation Tracy High is having. Though I am a senior the outcome of this may not affect my class, but this chaos needs to come to an end. Due to the construction of the theater, the reduction of student parking access and to staff parking enlargements are pushing students to park in places they may not belong. Because of this, law enforcement and Tracy staff are cracking down on the students, not allowing them to park in places students for years have been parking in. They are also issuing tickets to those who have had this parking access all of their Tracy High years. The neighborhood residents are mad that the students are leaving trash and other items on their property, but when they come out in the morning and after school, they report us for acting in the same manner as they treat us. They should not expect high school students to act respectful towards them when every day they treat us as if we are some type of animal. Also, you cannot expect to not have to deal with high schoolers when choosing to move next to a high school that has been there for almost 100 years, considering most of them attended Tracy High and dealt with the same problem. I believe Tracy High students should have the freedom to park where it is necessary within legal limits because it has always been that way, and should stay that way.

Tayler Misfeldt, Tracy

EDITOR,

Have you even heard the other side of the story yet? My name is Jack, a senior at Tracy High who has to leave home an hour and a half early just to make sure I am at school on time because of the lack of parking. Is it the students’ fault that we have nowhere to park so we resort to neighborhoods? I have been cursed and yelled at by a woman on 12th Street for absolutely zero reason numerous times. I understand that the residents of these streets may be fed up with traffic, but they do know the homes that they have bought were built after the school was? Every single person that lives on those streets knew that kids would be walking down their sidewalks every day of the week. Considering students now are not allowed to park at City Hall, we have no other choice but to park in the streets. It’s truly sad that the residents of these streets even say we have plenty of parking. I would love for these people to answer the question, “Why would I park in front of your house if there was parking at school?” Maybe we will just start parking on the soccer field.

Jack Spence

EDITOR,

The recent issue of Tracy High School parking has become the talk of the school. The residents have complained about the students parking in the neighborhood. What they don’t know is that students have very limited parking already. Now, you may think, “Why should I care?” Being a part of this community, just like you, I think the neighbors and the people of Tracy High should work together. Maybe take a look at the space across from the thrift store as a parking lot for students. Instead of working against each other, we should be working together as a community. The issue for the neighbors may have been resolved for them, but parking will become someone else’s problem.

Jessyca Delgado, Tracy

EDITOR,

Your recent article on the Tracy High School parking issue with residents is biased for the neighborhood. Unfortunately, the community was only capable of hearing the resident’s side of the story and the big picture is not addressed. The reason students are parking in the neighborhood and City Hall parking lots is because Tracy High School simply does not have enough parking spaces for upperclassmen. The construction being done on our school theater knocked out available spaces, and even students who arrive at school as early as 7:20 a.m. have difficulty in obtaining parking spots in “the box” parking lot or “A Building” parking lot. Students who are mainly affected by this are those who are out at worksites and do not arrive back to school until third period. Where else are they supposed to park? McDonald’s parking lot? As students, we feel at war with adults who think we intentionally want to park in front of their houses. Yes, driving is a privilege as a teenager, but the school should provide enough spaces for the amount of students they have. Instead of residents spending their time and money on permits for their houses, they should help convince the Tracy Unified School District and City Council in providing more parking areas for us students. This can be a win-win situation for everyone; the community just needs to understand the student’s perspective as well.

Ashlie Rodgers, Tracy

EDITOR,

Many ask why students don’t just walk to school. Well, maybe it’s because we live around 2 to 5 miles away, maybe even more. Then it’s reasonable to ask, why don’t the kids just park in the parking lot provided for them in the school? Well, let’s think about it really fast: How many parking spots are actually provided for students? Most of the parking lot is taken up by the staff at the school. Even so, we still have a sufficient amount of parking spots left. But did anyone ask if we are even allowed to park there? Some of the parking lot is off limits to the students because of construction and school reasons. The trash found around the streets are obviously irresponsible students. But the question is whether the littering is being over-exaggerated. How much trash is actually found around the streets? I’ve also seen the news of how they interviewed some of the residents from the neighborhood. Then how they showed a large amount of parking spots available, after school. Enforcing this parking permit will solve nothing but bring more chaos to the community. I suggest we just hold off this permit parking and take time to involve the whole community to solve this.

Giovany Cruz, Tracy

EDITOR,

In the recent edition of the Tracy Press, an article was written about the parking situation around Tracy High School. Did the school board consider busing? Are they so broke that they cannot pick up and drop off students in selected sites near the Tracy High School? When I went to high school, I was bused, along with attending band practice and being given two hours of homework every night. I had to pay $20 a month for bus fare in 1969 dollars. If the school district is so broke, ask the students to chip in a dollar a day or whatever they can give to pay for the buses. That would help defray the cost. Encourage carpooling; use the park near the Tracy High School for pick-up and drop-off, have a Tracy police officer be close at hand to scare away the evil perverts and the motorists who ignore safety and littering laws, then ticket them. Since many of our high school children are overweight, that would be good exercise to work off the excess weight and stress from the daily challenges of attending high school. By simply walking home in groups, there is safety in numbers. Now, for the residences near the school, cut our children some slack. Ninety-eight percent of them never bother the residents living nearby. I remember how they whined and complained about the high school band that had to practice on their street. Bands need room to march and drill to go to events such as parades and band reviews. They need to practice their competition march, such as “Army of the Nile,” “British Eighth” and “March of the Women Marines.” They need to get their route down to step off and perform. Just try marching with a drum or sousaphone — it is hard work, harder than a gym workout. You cannot practice this very well from a parking lot. Should they practice, go out and watch the show. If you cannot stand the noise, please go get ear plugs and ignore the music. Let the students practice. If the Tracy High School band practiced in front of my home, I would serve snacks and lead them through the trio of “British Eighth.”

Al Galaviz, Tracy

EDITOR,

I have read your article “Council moves to curb traffic near Tracy High” and could not help to notice that there were no quotes or any possible reference to the way the students are feeling or reacting toward this issue. The reason this issue is very important is because it has been an issue that has yet to be fixed by the school board. The students have no alternative to parking in the neighborhoods due to limited spaces at Tracy High due to construction and the elimination of previous parking locations, like the police department parking lot. If the parking permits were to pass, then where would students park? Around the block and have a 5-10 minute walk to school? I believe something should have been done to fix this problem, but all we can do now is let the City Council and the school board get together and find a solution that benefits both parties, as in the residential neighborhoods and the students. Thank you for your time.

Sarah Rodriguez, Tracy

EDITOR,

I believe that every single student body in Tracy High School will agree with me that the parking at the school is a relevant issue. I am a senior attending Tracy High, and as an individual driving to school every day, I always have difficulty finding a place to park. The available parking spots on the campus of my school does not meet the amount of students that drive their car to school every day. Whenever there is no more parking available — which will happen — the students have no choice other than to park in the neighborhoods. Parking in the neighborhoods is unpleasant for both parties; the students have to park in an unsupervised region far from the school, and for the residents living in the neighborhood, they have to deal with the distraction of teenagers going in and out of their neighborhood every day, in addition to coping with their attitude and behavior. It is not the students’ fault that they have to park in the neighborhood, and the residents are not to blame that the students are so upset about parking in the neighborhood. We have to blame the school district for this. It has been an ongoing problem for years and the district has never made an attempt to resolve the matter. To begin solving the issue, the district needs to immediately construct more parking spaces on their campus. Having permit parking would make matters worse by angering the students and making them park even further. The neighborhoods need to be patient about the matter and wait for the district to set things straight.

Tommy Ho, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am currently a senior at Tracy High school and I am just as concerned as everyone else about the parking situation Tracy High is having. Though I am a senior the outcome of this may not affect my class, but this chaos needs to come to an end. Due to the construction of the theater, the reduction of student parking access and to staff parking enlargements are pushing students to park in places they may not belong. Because of this, law enforcement and Tracy staff are cracking down on the students, not allowing them to park in places students for years have been parking in. They are also issuing tickets to those who have had this parking access all of their Tracy High years. The neighborhood residents are mad that the students are leaving trash and other items on their property, but when they come out in the morning and after school, they report us for acting in the same manner as they treat us. They should not expect high school students to act respectful towards them when every day they treat us as if we are some type of animal. Also, you cannot expect to not have to deal with high schoolers when choosing to move next to a high school that has been there for almost 100 years, considering most of them attended Tracy High and dealt with the same problem. I believe Tracy High students should have the freedom to park where it is necessary within legal limits because it has always been that way, and should stay that way.

Tayler Misfeldt, Tracy

EDITOR,

I have lived in two previous cities where high school parking was a challenge for neighborhood residents. In both cities, parking permits were finally issued to the neighborhood residents to give out to guests who were visiting them, and it worked very, very well. In fact, the permit parking was a 10-block radius within the high schools. No more traffic issues, no more trash, etc. The permits were Monday through Saturday to alleviate any problems during games at the high schools. The fines were steep, at $100 each offense. Believe me, permits are the answer to the traffic/parking problem. May I also suggest to the district high schools that they only allow driving to and from schools by seniors only. This too helps.

Cindy Adams, Tracy

EDITOR,

There have been some issues involving Tracy High School students parking in the neighborhoods. Citizens are angry because there has been a lot of litter that they have had to pick up. We the students have not been given the opportunity to voice our opinion in this topic. I think it is only fair if everyone takes a glance at our side of the story. I do not blame the citizens that live there, but a question that I would like answered from them is: how would restricting students from parking there cause less problems? From my point of view, this would involve students to walk more and yet causing much more trash. A bit controversial I think. I believe the school district is to be blames for not solving this problem beforehand. The main reason we park in neighborhoods is because we were kicked out of the parking area in front of the police station, with the school being under construction there are fewer parking spots. Many of us live far and have more responsibilities.

Adanely Y. Beltran, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am writing this letter in regard to your article speaking on the parking issues that have developed in the neighborhoods neighboring Tracy High School. I appreciate your input on the situation at hand, but I found that the article only spoke of only one side of the story. Unfortunately, I did not find the students’ perspective of the situation in the article which portrays the true meaning of why students park in the neighborhood. Being that so many students now drive their own cars to school, there is only a limited amount of student parking on campus that can supply the needs of the students. Every morning, almost 30 minutes before the school bell rings, students are found circling the parking lot in a last attempt to find a free parking space. The students who do not find a parking spot are then forced to find parking in the neighborhood so that they can make it to school on time. It is not that we students want to park in the neighborhood. We only park there because we have no other choice. The parking lot is also a major problem during lunch time for the upperclassmen. We are given 35 minutes for lunch, and those who choose to drive off campus for lunch must return at least 10 minutes prior to the bell to again find a parking spot on campus. Therefore, those who do not make it back in time to find a parking spot on campus must park in the neighborhood. We do not park in the neighborhood by choice. We only park in the neighborhood because that is the only option left. In conclusion, I hope that giving the student perspective toward the issues of Tracy High students parking in the neighborhoods will show that we are not students out looking for trouble. We only wish to have an appropriate place to park our cars due to the insufficient amount of parking supplied by the district. Making the neighborhood streets permit-only will only worsen the situation at hand.

Sheliah Calhoun, Tracy

EDITOR,

After reading your article on parking at Tracy High, I strongly disagree with what you are saying. I am a senior at Tracy High and have been struggling with finding parking there for two years now. Our parking lot at Tracy High is ridiculously small, and now the places around the school that we used to be able to park at are being taken away from us. These places include City Hall and the neighborhood next to the school. As a result of this poor parking situation, if students cannot find a spot in the school’s parking lot, then we have nowhere else to go. Are we supposed to just not come to school? Therefore, I do not believe creating a permit parking only zone in the neighborhood next to the school is the best idea.

Steven Schreppel, Tracy

EDITOR,

I am writing to you concerning the situation about parking permitting across the street of Tracy High School in the surrounding neighborhoods. I have two things to say, the news made it look completely wrong and in a way I agree and disagree with the permit parking. I also have solutions to each and hope that you might take into consideration and feel the same way. First, I saw the video when the news crew came over. There were interviews with the residents who said they had a petition from the neighbors saying that they agree to the parking permits, because the streets are too narrow. The news videotaped posted live footage of the Tracy High parking lot, which showed that there were plenty of spots available. Unfortunately, their timing was terrible, because the footage was taken after school hours. So, yes, there are going to be a lot of empty parking spots. If they would have come during school hours, the footage would have shown all of the parking spaces taken in the A Building, the box and the ag parking lots! Finally, I agree and disagree with the parking permits. I agree because I would be upset too if there was traffic going on every day outside the front of my house. I disagree because, as a taxpayer, I feel we have the right to park on the street as long as we are not blocking a driveway. The neighborhood is a “public” place for the “public” to legally park. The fastest way to fix this to me would be to just limit parking to upperclassmen — seniors and juniors — because in the middle of the year, sophomores can get their license, and around this time the parking is hectic till the end of the year. Also, sophomores don’t even go off campus, so it’s almost a waste for them to even drive anyways. By doing this, there would be a lot less complaints from the residents across the street of Tracy High and students will be able to park on school grounds.

Marcos Rodriguez, Tracy

EDITOR,

I do not mean to be disrespectful, but requiring a parking permit to park in the neighborhood is a big problem. This will have bad results, because the students of Tracy High would not be able to park anywhere near the school anymore, because the school parking lot lacks space for every student driver. Also, even if the parking permits were to be approved and were put to use permanently, there would still be problems and trash all around the neighborhood would still remain, because it is not only the students who litter. Moreover, the Tracy Unified School District should have fixed this problem way back, but how could they if there are a lot of problems stopping them, like construction around the school and the neighborhood. This makes it harder for the school to build a bigger parking lot or do construction to expand anything, because there are houses and big buildings in use all around the school that they could not take down. Furthermore, the community should care about this issue, because not only does it concern that their properties are being vandalized or their children are the issue here, but it would be a great inconvenience if the students parked somewhere down the block. My point here is that these students drive for a reason, not to be late or rushed or having to walk far, and preventing them from parking in the neighborhoods would do just as that.

Kate Jacob

EDITOR,

The fact that the city of Tracy is planning on taking away the limited amount of parking for Tracy High students is absolutely outrageous. The neighbors should’ve known what they were getting themselves into by moving next to a high school in the first place. Tracy High already has a fairly small amount of parking compared to high schools like Kimball and West High. Students are not allowed to park at City Hall anymore, which takes away parking that Tracy students could use. The construction that is going on takes away additional parking spaces that students could be using. The neighborhood is a public area and we have the right to park there. Even if the city decides to make permit parking zones, the problem will not disappear at all. Students who are not able to get a parking spot on campus will just park farther away and the same problems will continue to happen except it’ll happen somewhere else. Parking farther away means that the student will potentially be late to class as a result of that. Also, parking spots fill up quickly on campus so students resort to the neighborhood for a reason. Students and parents will drive down those streets regardless of what is being put into place. It’s not fair to us students and it’s just something the residents have to cope and get over with.

Dennis Nguyen, Tracy

EDITOR,

I recently read your article regarding the issue regarding Tracy High students parking in the nearby neighborhoods. While I agree that the Tracy High students are acting unruly, I do not believe the dilemma they face was properly recognized. Truth is they are backed into a wall when it comes to this parking situation. Recently the students were prohibited from parking by City Hall, which greatly reduced the amount of available parking. Another factor in available parking is the current construction project taking place at Tracy High. The construction even further restricts the parking available to the students. The littering done by the students is unacceptable, but the students wouldn’t park in the neighborhood if they didn’t have to. This is as much of a problem to them as it is with every other member of our community.

Andres Artiga, Tracy

EDITOR,

Well, it appears that the parking situation around Tracy High has been one-sided. Yes, I understand that people living in the neighborhoods close to Tracy High are angry, but there two sides to every argument. Students at Tracy High need to be able to park close by, so as to be able to attend school on time, but no, even then, students are still late to school, due to everyone — students and teachers — looking for a parking spot. And, as more and more students are able to drive, that's less parking for everyone else who goes to Tracy High. And remember, both West High and Kimball High have large parking lots. (I do not know about Millennium High, but most likely, the high school has a decent parking lot as well.) A lot of students are respectful and do not litter as well. In fact, many students who go off campus during lunch do not litter. I often see the trash cans outside Tracy High full to a decent amount. However, there is a select few people who do not respect public property or other people's property and want to ruin it for everyone else. Just because they are lazy. You cannot blame a whole school for a few people. That is, essentially, a stereotype. Oh, was it mentioned that the parking lots near the police station cannot be parked at without a permit? And if those nearby neighborhoods are prohibited, students and teachers will have to park farther away from the school and most likely show up late, hurting many students in their studies. There are solutions, however. Free up those parking lots near the police station so students and teachers do not have to park with permits. Yes, it has to be approved by the police and maybe the City Council, but it is better than using up more resources just to make a parking lot maybe about a mile away from the school. There are other solutions, but freeing up those already-made parking lots is probably the most cost-effective solution for the city. Wait, weren't those parking free to students and teachers before?

Jonas Sampayan, Tracy

EDITOR,

I thought we were living in a democracy. What happened to hearing both sides? Taking a vote? Letting the majority rule? I am a student of Tracy High School and I began driving to school around the end of 2011. Tracy High School has always had problems with more student cars than student parking places, but it has never been this extreme. Your article about the Tracy High parking problem is biased and one-sided. It is a minority of the student littering, etc., that are ruining it for the rest of us. Tracy High School has been here since the beginning of Tracy. The houses and neighborhood came after the school. Therefore the residents should have known what they were getting into when they moved there. Construction at our school has taken away parking spots, we can no longer park at City Hall, there are 200 student parking spaces and at least 500 student cars that drive to school daily. Where are we to go? Be glad we are still making an effort to go to school and not just giving up and staying home because there is no room for our cars anywhere. Also: “Melissa No-Last-Name” could not have found a hot dog wrapper on her lawn. There are no hot dog places on this side of town. You have a solution?

Savannah Correll, Tracy

EDITOR,

As a student at Tracy High, I am well aware of the issues with students parking in the neighborhood near the school. None of us want to park there. We would prefer, of course, to use the student parking lots, but there are just not enough spaces and so we have nowhere else to go. Requiring permits to park on the street would just make us move over to the next streets over; we would just be someone else’s problem as well as late to class. I would also like to point out that the majority of students parking on the streets try to be respectful to the homeowners, but, as usual, there is a small percentage that makes the rest of us look bad by littering and being rude. What we need is an alternative to parking in front of other people’s homes. The parking lot at City Hall, for example, is across the street from the school and is mostly empty during the day. If we were allowed to park there, it would greatly reduce the number of students having to park in the neighborhood and would likely alleviate some of the horrible traffic after school.

Sierra Barnett-Stelck, Tracy

EDITOR,

Parking for Tracy High students has been a problem for many years. I get to school at 7:20 every day, and there are zero parking spots in the Tracy High parking lot. After watching a news report on the parking issues, I noticed how the neighbors and news crew made it seem as if there are plenty of available parking spots at the school. The news crew didn't account for the loss of some student parking spots due to construction on the theater. They also didn't account that students can't park across the street from the school because City Hall has said we can't park there. Neighboring businesses such as Cal Customs also restricted their parking spots from students. If the neighborhoods become permit parking, the students will have absolutely nowhere to park and the parking will become even more of an issue.

Aaron Lopez, Tracy

EDITOR,

I understand that school parking is becoming a problem between Tracy High School and the neighborhood next to it. I have realized that we have more students driving this year compared to the past few years now that sophomores are starting to drive. I believe that it is not entirely our fault that we do not have sufficient parking in our campus. Most of the parking spots Tracy High has on campus are for staff, not for the students. It is slightly hard for the students to get to school early and get a parking spot due to all the school traffic that goes on around Millennium High School and Tracy High School. You have to understand that the small amount of parking spots Tracy High has for students is completely full by 7:30 or before. The only solution that will work is if the school had a bigger parking lot for students, but the question is, is that possible? If you look around, the school is surrounded by neighborhoods, a park and train tracks. There would have to be a lot of remodeling included if the district added a parking lot for the school. Our purpose is not to get the house owners mad, we just need a spot to park our car while we are attending school.

Mishel Duron

 

Comments
(21)
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me-here
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February 23, 2014
I hve just read the campaign letters by the students voicing their joined theme of "poor me" for no parking. Just when did driving to school become a RIGHT ? Students in elementary school don't DRIVE to school. But they get there. My parents didn't have to drive me to school and I sure didn't take the bus. There is walking available which would be good exercise and busing should be provided for those too far away to walk.

I have no sympathy for those complaining students.

Again, driving is a privilege.
Gabe63
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February 06, 2014
Nobody wins in this case.

Students should not be punished for mistakes that the district failed to fix.

But also residents should not have to deal with the speeding of new drivers.

Solution:

1. open city hall for pubic parking for the time being until TUSD can find a long term solution.

2. Put speed bumps down the street.

3.Eduacte the students about driving and its risk factors.

Ornley_Gumfudgen
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February 23, 2014
Gabe63

"1. open city hall for pubic parking for the time being until TUSD can find a long term solution."

Can't do it. It's mixin public funds. City funds an School funds. Th parkin problem is th district's problem ta solve. They can do it by workin with th City an if th City can help it will. But basically it's a School District problem, one of yer other local governments that few actually consider, it ain't th City's problem ta solve. Co-minglin public funds like that is illegal in Ca.

"2. Put speed bumps down the street." Not all taghether a bad idea providin ya get th district ta pay fer it an all of th property owners said bumps affect are in majority agreement. If ya notice we do have some speed bumps in town but thair so shallow largely thair ineffective in really controllin th speed. Besides,I am of th notion that parkin is more of a problem than speed on these side streets even though it's a factor ta be condidered.

"3.Eduacte the students about driving and its risk factors."

Isn't drivin education already bein taught along with th risk factors? Not doin much good apparently. So perhaps somethang else is necessary.

But ys get credit fer offerin ideas.
MrSycamore
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February 04, 2014
If these kids can afford to drive a car to school they can afford to buy a permit. The revenue from the permits can go to constructing a new parking lot. I remember as a college student at UCD, nobody owned a car. We all biked and took the bus.
TalkinTracy
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February 02, 2014
Wow. Al Galivez ,your words were enjoyable to read. I never thought I would live to see this day. Whatever you did, keep it up. Can't say I agree with everything you wrote, but I have never before completed reading your entire writing. This time was somehow different. Refreshing and hope it could be the start of something fresh and new because it was actually somewhat entertaining to read. Who woulda thunk.
1219tracy
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February 01, 2014
The problem seems that there was more parking, but because of construction at the theater and a loss of another parking lot, students lost a lot of spots. Tracy High should have more parking, the other two schools do. It's really easy to say just ride your bike or walk. Do you really want 500 or more kids walking/biking down MacArthur or Tracy or 11th to get to school? The next argument would be the kids are getting the way of traffic. Also where would you park that many bikes? For one, it's just not possible for the kids that live in the Jefferson school district, it's too far and it would be too dangerous to walk/bike. There a lot of places where there aren't sidewalks. If they have sports or after school activities at certain times of the year they would be walking in the dark to get home. Also it would be hard to carry a backpack and sports equipment or a musical instrument while biking. A lot of kids have jobs where they need to go right after school or if their parents work or have younger children at different schools, it makes it necessary to drive. The school and city need to come up with more parking spots and build a lot for the school.
Sneaky
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February 01, 2014
The school or the city leaders just need to severely limit parking around the school and/or the number of students that are allowed to drive to school. Parents might need to help out with that. I took the bus or bicycled to school throughout my high school years. The ride was 12 miles each way yet I bicycled to school 2-3 times a week. The other days I took the school bus. I am sure most of these precious snowflakes live quite a bit closer. They don't all need to drive.
ladams345
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February 01, 2014
I agree with you, Stephen. I think maybe the school should take a look at students address and issue permits to those students who live beyond a walking distance. Just as the bus is for students who live too far or in a rural area. Reserve parking first to those students who NEED/HAVE to have use a vehicle to get to school. As for walking/biking, these are very valid ideas, for those students who live withing walking distance. For students who have sports equipment, musical instruments, etc. the school should set up a storage or special locker area for THOSE students, who walk/bike to school because they live close enough to the school. For the record, I used to live on Emerson and Wall when I attended THS back in 02', I had to walk most days, except for extreme situations. If it rained, i used an umbrella, it sucked to walk in the rain, but it happens. Berverdor and and 12th were crazy at certain times of the day, thats inevitable. Its gonna be a mad house when school begins and lets out. The speeding does need to stop. Speed bumps would work. As for trash, it happens to almost every house who lives next to a school. It sucks, but its life. I cant imagine yards covered with trash.
ladams345
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February 01, 2014
Dont they sell hot dogs at football games? You dont need a hot dog place on this side of town to get hot dog-related trash in your yard when you live across from a high school foot ball stadium. Id bet that hot dogs are sold at almost ANY THS event, sports or otherwise, as concessions. Love that every letter sounded the same, and basically said the same things, same arguments, save but one or two.

JonnoB
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January 31, 2014
This is like those who buy a house near an airport and complain about the noise. Or buy a house near a playground and complain about the children screaming with joy. And perhaps, those who buy a home on a golf course and complain about the occasional golf ball that lands on your property. If you buy a home near a high school with limited parking, expect the overflow. It has been that way for more than a generation. The city succumbing to those complaints are the same ones who complain about the Friday and weekend football game noise. That school, that field was there already. If the city really wants to do something to help, buy the businesses out in front of the school and donate it to TUSD so that they can expand the parking lot on 11th street. Neighbors - be happy that kids are going to school. If you don't like it, move so that someone who actually loves children can buy a home close to the high school. Considering that we are approaching the century mark for the school, I am sure it was there first.
victor_jm
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January 31, 2014
JonnoB,

Your comment is both juvenile and myopic. I could say the Indians were here first and maybe we all ought to pack our bags and leave. Your observation is beside the point.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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January 31, 2014
victor_jm

An yer comment is rude,condescendin an sophomoric yet I shall allow ya ta express yer First Amendment rights. Yer comment was entirely unnecessary.
victor_jm
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January 31, 2014
Ornley,

I actually thought I made an astute judgment about JonnoB's thinking, but, hey, I could be wrong--and you may be wrong.

Now, do you have an opinion about the matter worth expressing? I'd really like to hear it.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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February 02, 2014
victor_jm

It's not wise ta judge people based on an incomplete understandin of what thair sayin.

An with respect ta a comment worth expressin, which plainly yer comment made ta Jonno B wasn't worth expressin, I'll oblige an comment on th topic.

No doubt th comment won't set well with many folk but that hasn't stopped me before.

I agree with Jonno ta some extent in that when ya purchase a home close ta a high school, airport, train tracks, factory or some other source of noise ya willingly or unwillingly place yerself inta a situation where noise generated by those thangs are gonna effect ya.

With respect ta traffic an parkin, ya can pretty much expect that those thangs are going ta have a negative impact on yer home.

Parkin fer schools at th high school level has always been a problem. It's not a problem fer schools alone but is easier ta discern as virtually every high school in America taday, unless they have taken th steps ta devote school owned properties ta parking fer students, which very few have actually done, especially in places like California.

My question deals more with students an thair education, th primary reason fer th schools ta exist in th cont.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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February 02, 2014
victor_jm cont.

th first place. Th question is do these high school students need quick access ta private transportation in order ta attain a good public education?

Considerin our laws consider drivin ta be a privileged, somethang I totally agree with, it seems ta me that student parkin, as well as faculty parkin is a privilege as well.

Privileges are granted ta folk when th excercisin of that privilege don't negatively effect anyone else. If one can't intellegently exercise his or her privilege ta whair it don't negatively effect anyone else then that privilege rightfully should be revoked.

As I see it thair are several options an none that will appease everyone.

First option - all of th neighborhoods surroundin th school should be issued permits allowin th residents street parkin while disallowin those without th permit th ability ta park thair. This is done by many Cities in th US without too much problem. Th negative ta this deals with th inadequate parkin fer Lincoln Park when it hosts a citywide event. Parkin by permit fer access ta th park would be a problem. But not a problem that can't be dealt with an lived with.

Second option - Restrict on campus parkin ta faculty members who work thair and Senior students old enough ta drive an have maintained a GPA at a minimum of 3.0. Remember, th purpose of school is ta attain an education an not a place ta socialize an be provided a place ta park yer car. Eliminate th off campus lunch privileges fer all students. First of all thair ain't enough eatin establishments in close proximity ta th school forcin students ta drive like mad ta leave school, eat lunch an return ta school fer thair next class. It's a life threatenin danger an should be curtailed for that reason alone.

Third Option - If th parents pressured th school district thair is enough unused space not in current use at Tracy High that could be easily converted ta a parkin lot fer students at a nominal expense. This way all student parkin could be contained on th Tracy High campus an not spill out inta our neighborhoods and City Owned properties. Th districts like ta feel that they are autonomous frum th city yet always seem ta foist it's problems on th city ta deal with. In short here, th school district should pay for any an all parkin an leave th city out of th equation.

Students! Ya can go a long way inta aleviatin th problem by policin yerselves. Dumpin of trash on someone's lawn is not somethang ya'd like ta see in yer own yard. Racin down th street ain't somethang ya would probably like if it happened in front of yer home on a virtual daily basis. Parashutist bailouts of cars in th middle of th street ta drop off students ain't th best behavior for intellegend humans either, besides, it's illegal. Th same is true fer j-walkin. If ya cross at th light or cross in a crosswalk pay attention th th vehicular traffic around ya. It might save yer life or th life of someone else.

Unfortunately taday it seems far to many of us live in a society that apparently believes it has th complete right ta do virtually anything regardless of th consequences an negative impacts on someone else.

So, thair ya have it. My thoughts on th topic of discussion with several options that might help ta solve th apparent problem, for what it's worth. Granted it's not gonna sit well with everyone but that's ta be expected.

I can only assume that th comment made fer Al Galivez was misplaced in that I couldn't find it anywhere in this comment section.

Now if ya have somethang ta contribute that's on th topic of discussion victor_jm, I might participate. But if it's just ta negatively stigamitize someone freely expressin their opinion an right of speech don't expect me ta treat ya any differently than my first comment ta ya.

On that thought, it's pretty obvious ya were a little upset by my comment ta ya, which by th way was entirely true, but felt it was OK fer ya ta do th same thang ta JonnoB. Let me ask, if ya didn't like that type of remark bein made ta ya what would make ya think it would be all right fer ya ta do th same thang ta JonnoB? Get th point? Somehow I seriously doubt it but I do have hope.

Let th littany of mindless attacks tawards me fer expressin my thoughts commense.

Ornley_Gumfudgen
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February 02, 2014
I forgot one last thang. Residents, ya don't own th rights of parkin in front of yer house. Th street belongs ta th general public who pay th taxes ta maintain those streets an it's not thair fer yer sole use an benefit. Settin out cones in front of yer house ta prevent someone frum parkin thair is illegal, check it out fer yerself in th VC. Now ya can take action against those who block yer driveway, that's covered by th VC as well. But remember, ya pay taxes fer law enforcement officers ta take care of that problem an really shouldn't risk yer life an limb by takin on th problem by yerself against someone who has decided it's OK ta block yer driveway. Such an encounter ain't gonna turn out well fer th most part an could get ya some trouble ya are unprepared ta deal with. Best let th professionals yer tax dollars pay fer ta deal with th problem.

Well, that's enough fer taday. I might respond later but doubt it.
kari_nicole
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January 31, 2014
I can understand both sides of this. I live in this area. The kids have no where else to park. But my issue is how fast they drive down these streets. There is a preschool/daycare on Berverdor. In the morning, on their lunches, and after school. I watch them fly down my street. Wheres tracy pd then? I've personally seen accidents happen in that intersection on Berverdor.

It is annoying to try and park in front of your own house and you can't because of these kids. Whether it's during school hours or a football game. But we chose to live next to a high school.

So instead of just moving the problem to another neighborhood, why can't we do some speed bumps, or stop signs, or have a cop out there once in a while.

1resident
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January 31, 2014
Some of the residents, not all of them, have the 'hooray for me and the hell with everyone else' attitude. Once the parking gets moved to another neighborhood, they won't care how that area is impacted. Some of these people just want to complain. When the students park further away and have to walk past their house, they will find a reason to complain about that. I have experienced firsthand the nutty woman on Berverdor, who stands out in front of her house and is just looking for trouble with people. As a parent who picks up my child there, she's called me out for simply parking in front of her house, in a very disrespectful manner. I have lived in front of a school. Look at the big picture and be glad the kids are in school. It's a public street, you bought the house, deal with it, or move.
MaryShi
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January 31, 2014
Many high school students cannot carpool to school because of before/after school activities, and biking is not an option for students with a lot of sports or music equipment. Permit parking would punish students when they are also the victims of TUSD's poor planning. If residents want to let TUSD know that " we’re not going to just take it," they should be targeting TUSD and not the students. This could take on the form of a city injunction to require TUSD pay for litter removal on the streets in question or hire new security to manage the morning/afternoon parking frenzies. These sort of measures would hopefully be the sort of financial incentive necessary to push TUSD into finding a long term solution to the parking deficit.
victor_jm
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January 31, 2014
Cristian Ramos,

I agree with your assessment—that the School District and the City are responsible for this over-flow parking situation, and we know why they have knowingly disregarded it for so long. There is a property (many, in fact) in my neighborhood that has recently been converted into a multi-plex (the garage has also been converted into a living space). Now, this property has no driveway or garages. I think to myself, “O.k., this property has eight units … where are the residents going to park?”

The City doesn’t care if your neighborhood becomes a parking lot. The City doesn’t care about converting your street into a one-way street and placing parallel parking spots in front of your house. The City is actually hoping to do this to the neighborhoods in the downtown area because it is part of their downtown vision. They want to ruin neighborhoods that existed when this town was no more than a few thousand people by encouraging more growth and imposing on these neighborhoods whenever they feel the need to sponsor community spirit events.

DunkMan
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January 31, 2014
Parking at Tracy High is a common topic of discussion in our home as all four of our kids attend Tracy High. All four are licensed to drive, and all four have their own cars, but as their dad, I do mandate carpooling to cut expenses to ensure my kids only use only one of the parking spots on campus. As their dad, I get to evaluate the infrequent requests made by my kids to drive by themselves and park on the street, but they also know they need a really good reason to do so.

I'm not sure if there is a satisfactory solution to this problem. Tracy High School is basically a newly-constructed high school, which based on its enrollment would typically be built on 60 acres of land. In their questionable wisdom, the school-board re-built this new school on a legacy piece of land that is probably two-thirds that size.

A little research shows that relocating the high school to a larger, more suitable location was considered and rejected. The results of that decision to rebuild on that "hallowed but compact location" will be felt for many years to come.

Stephen


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