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Written by Samantha Steven
UM students can only guarantee a parking spot at 6 a.m. or 3 p.m. All times in between are a "zoo," to use Missoula's city nickname. Although the campus has more than 10 parking lots, UM sells parking permits at 30 percent over capacity. However, despite the deficient parking, many people protest the idea of creating more parking spaces because it would be taking open space and putting concrete on it. These environmentalist versus practicality views clash when any discussion of parking enters the conversation.
In response to the parking problem, Associated Students of the University of Montana (ASUM) organized a bus transportation system called the Park-N-Ride, which picks up students living in University housing (such as Lewis and Clark, and University Villages) every 15 to 20 minutes. Even people who do not live in Lewis and Clark or University Villages can drive to that bus stop, park their car for free, and ride the bus to campus (thus, where the bus gets its name). In addition, the main community bus system, Mountain Line, provides free rides to students who present a Griz Card. Many UM students do not drive or take buses to school, though; they ride their bikes. Known for its bike culture, Missoula has roadways and paths for safe biking. The UM campus itself hosts thousands of bike racks to accommodate the plentiful population of students who ride their bikes to school.
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