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After another round of shuttle permits, some students still left in the dust

“We were under the impression the service would expand or become better equipped to support rider demand but instead the shuttle is reverting. “said mechanical engineering junior, Omar Khayyam Hussain. | Robert De La Garza/The Cougar

Last month, after the priority registration period for the Sugar Land Shuttle closed, a lot of students had yet to receive their passes. Students were unhappy, claiming Parking and Transportation Services showed no cooperation and simply asked them to join the waitlist. 

Amid students struggling with their commute, Parking and Transportation Services issued additional passes for the shuttle to priority students  — regardless of their spot on the waitlist. 

“I feel it’s unfair, especially since I’m first on the waitlist and yet I can’t use the shuttle,” said mechanical engineering junior Omar Khayyam Hussain. “We were under the impression the service would expand or become better equipped to support rider demand, but instead the shuttle is reverting.”

Priority registration includes students who  are enrolled in face-to-face classes at both Sugar Land and UH main campus or live on main and take classes at Sugar Land.

While Parking and Transportation Services has already started issuing more permits, a lot of students have yet to receive their passes. There is still no update for students who don’t fall into the two categories and are still struggling with getting to and from their courses. 

“If a student is in one of the two groups they should have either received it by now or they can contact parking and get it immediately resolved,” said mathematics-data science senior and TPAC Chair Salik Faisal. 

No formal emails were sent by Parking and Transportation Services regarding the new passes. However, members of the Transportation and Parking Advisory Committee informed students about the new update through a message on the UH Sugar Land Shuttle GroupMe.

The University has suggested alternative transportation methods to riders but they have not been satisfactory to some students. The unreliable schedules of Houston public transportation often keep them on campus later, leading to safety concerns. 

“I have to depend on METRO which is very inconvenient as my commute is four hours and I’m forced to walk alone through the Third Ward at night,” Hussain said. 

New solutions are still being discussed within Parking and Transportation Services according to TPAC members. 

“Parking and Transportation Services will observe over the next few weeks or semester before more updates,” said journalism senior and TPAC Vice Chair Zahra Gokal. “I don’t think there’ll be many options for commuters to use the shuttle if they’re not in the priority list, at least this semester.”

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