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Survey: Students Don’t See the Innovation in Parking Loss

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Construction on the University of New Haven’s Bergami Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation was tentatively scheduled to begin on April 1, yet many students know little about it — and even less are in favor of the project.

Of 106 New Haven students surveyed in an unscientific survey, 51.9 percent said they were against, 33 percent said they did not have enough information to form an opinion, and only 12.3 percent said they were in favor of the center. Additionally, 23.4 percent said they had not even heard of the project.

The innovation center has been in the planning stages for over a year, and has been discussed in forums that included faculty, the Undergraduate Student Council, and the Graduate Student Council.

“The spirit of the building is to create an environment of collaboration where cross disciplines may get together to share ideas in an innovative way,” said Louis Annino, vice president of facilities.

Although construction on the building is scheduled to begin within a month, many students are currently unaware of its purpose. Rumors have circulated and included, either use as a student lounge, use as a glass building for art students, neither of which are entirely accurate.  

The center will replace the Kaplan parking lot, and those parking spaces will be replaced off-campus in peripheral parking.

Currently, there are six options being explored to accommodate the lost parking spots, although Annino said that no details could be released while it’s being negotiated.

Although the parking will be elsewhere, many students said they believe there is already too great an issue with parking, and the center will make it worse.

“It is literally the Hunger Games when it comes to parking here,” said Senait Rhoden, senior forensic science major.

Chris Costantini, junior psychology major, described parking as a “nightmare that people live with because they don’t have any other choice,” while Samantha Davidson, freshman criminal justice and investigative services major, said that parking is “100 percent not enough.”

“Commuters are given a disadvantage and at this point, I think it is purposely,” said Brittany Kennedy, junior criminal justice major.

But not all students are against the project. Some said it is a smart move for the university’s development, and that parking spaces can be replaced.

“We’re a growing university and new buildings are required as well as several other types of buildings,” said Katelyn Zicker, junior marine biology and environmental science major. “We can’t expand unless we make some changes on campus.”

Kyle DeGennaro, junior marine biology major, expressed his frustration that the money could be better spend elsewhere, improving the “out of date” academic buildings.

“There’s no question that it’s going to be a challenge and we’re all going to have to work together to get through that,” Annino.

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Survey: Students Don’t See the Innovation in Parking Loss