A Question of Lights and Pavement

By Evan Llanso, Contributing Writer

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     The students, staff, and visitors who use the parking lots near Bloomsburg Hospital face uneven terrain that rocks their vehicles and possibly causes damage, or to those who walk in the lot at night, may feel unsafe going to their vehicle for fear of ambush or attack, but change is possible.

     On October 30, 2017 a student concern was brought forth concerning the lots located near the Bloomsburg Hospital to increase lighting and discuss pavement of the lots.

     The issue was brought forward by CGA member Ms. Elayne Che, who through email stated that for now this is still only a “student concern” and thus no operations have been put in motion as of yet; to emphasize, no “numbers or timeframe” for these projects has been established.

     However, Ms. Che did mention that “there have been instances” that would possibly encourage the instillation of more lighting.

     These instances, while unspecified, most likely refer to the multiple cases of sexual harassment and assault that have occurred both in past semesters and near the beginning of this current semester.

     On the topic of pavement of the currently dirt lots, while any plans have yet to come to fruition, Ms. Che was gracious enough to discuss one important factor that supports going forward.

     The issue in question is if paving would repair the uneven, depression-laden lot that currently can cause damage to a vehicle’s suspension should the driver be unaware of the terrain. Ms. Che was quoted via email stating that “paving would solve the dirt problem.”

     In addition, having the lots paved, which regularly become filled by traffic both of students and visitors, would alleviate danger during the spring and winter months

     Specifically, the current dirt lots have the tendency to become treacherous when mixed with rain or snow, this occurrence can prove highly dangerous to both pedestrians, drivers, and any present vehicles, if not from physical injury, then further trouble can arise from financial restitution due to damages.

     Student opinions on this matter have been more so in support, but there are voices speaking in opposition to any instillation plans.
In regards to lighting, one testimony in particular comes from Ms. Emily Yackiel, who stated, “As winter sets in and it gets darker much sooner each day, I feel as a nursing  student who can’t afford to shorten my study sessions on campus, having increased lighting in the parking lot would make me feel safer as I walk to my car.”

     Another student who wished to remain anonymous even thought it would be best to upgrade to LED lighting for the lots, which provide better illumination compared to incandescent lights, for the reason “It would provide a greater deterrent against malicious action”

      On the matter of having the lots paved, multiple students, in particular Ms. Jordan Hummel, voiced their feelings as “I agree the lots should be paved for winter weather,” many citing increased safety as the reasoning for the paving project

      In the corner of those against the paving, one oppositionist who requested anonymity, stated that “The paving could be an even greater danger in the case of black ice forming, something that won’t happen on gravel, and drivers may find more traction than they would on a smooth paved lot.”