Crash course to not crashing during your commute


File photo.

by Leonardo Castaneda

Traffic during the first few weeks of fall classes is hectic to say the least. We have some information courtesy of San Diego State’s Marketing and Communications to keep in mind while looking for the best parking spots and mapping the shortest route from car to classroom.

Follow the leader

From 7 a.m. until noon during the first couple of weeks of classes, there will be traffic controllers keeping everyone in line. Make sure to follow their bright-vested leadership as they direct commuters throughout the SDSU campus. There will also be signs and controllers alerting drivers of full parking structures. But don’t panic, they will help direct you to the nearest structure with available spots.


Stick it or ticket

Don’t forget to securely affix your new parking permit in the lower right-hand corner of your front windshield. While you’re at it, feel free to remove previous parking permit stickers—there are other ways to show off that this is semester No. 9 at SDSU. If you don’t have a parking permit, prepare to pay a fine because there is no grace period. If you forgot to get a permit you can purchase one at the temporary parking permit machines.


Map to park

Only a naive freshman would head to school without a clear game plan of where they want to park. Remember lots O and P are still closed for construction, and Lot Q is visitors only. If you arrive later than other commuters (any time after 9 a.m. is usually considered too late for prime parking spots), then your best bets are going to be parking structures 3 and 6. If you’re not sure what’s closest to your class, check out the map of campus and make a plan.


Don’t drive

It goes without saying that the best way to avoid traffic is to not drive at all. Bicycles are a great alternative to driving, as long as cyclists stay along the designated bike paths on campus. Whatever you do, don’t drive to campus and then park in the residential areas directly around it. These requite a “B” parking permit from the city, and failure to have one will result in a hefty fine—trust me, I know.

You can also take the bus here or ride the trolley that conveniently stops directly across from the new Aztec Student Union. Students can purchase semester student passes for buses and trolleys at the Viejas Arena Ticket Office.


These are only a few of the things successful commuters need to know to survive the first weeks of school. The rest they will learn through experience. But through it all remember, be courteous and kind, and you’ll get to class in time.