Parking Relief Coming to Biola Students: A five-story parking structure approved by the Board of Trustees

Oct. 1, 2008 By Jenna Bartlo

LA MIRADA, CALIF. --- Students will have more parking spaces on Biola’s campus in 2010, when the school plans to complete a recently approved five-story parking structure.

President Barry H. Corey and his administrative council of seven met with the Board of Trustees at the annual Board retreat on Sept. 27 to discuss Biola’s parking issues among other business items.

Many discussions have occurred over the past few years concerning the parking issue since Biola has continued to experience record enrollment each year since 2000. The parking impact on neighboring streets is a big concern to Biola.

The parking structure is included on Biola’s city-approved master plan, and will be built over an existing parking lot - Lot I, situated between the gymnasium/pool/athletic complex and the baseball field.  Providing a net gain of 613 parking spaces, the structure has the potential to meet parking demands through 2016, possibly 2020 according to University planned growth statistics.

Other options that were considered to accommodate parking needs included: paving over Biola’s baseball field and constructing a similar structure like the soccer field; banning freshmen from having cars on campus; or paving over existing green space which has high value to Biola’s community to preserve its urban setting. However, all these alternative options carried negative consequences.

“It was self evident at the end of all of the options on the table regarding parking that this was the best decision.” Said Carl Schreiber, vice president of finance.

With the current national economy setbacks, primary concerns were of course related to funding the project.

“We have internally generated funds and can borrow against the University reserves we have established. Our secure financial position is in part due to the generosity of our donors and the conservative approach we took for management of our financial assets,” said Board of Trustees member, Wayne Lowell, Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee.

According to Vice President of Finance, Carl Schreiber, “the economy provides us a window of opportunity with costs of steel and construction having decreased in comparison to what they cost us in previous years. We are discussing this project as being financed internally and that is a positive position to be in. This funding of this project will not be placed upon student tuition costs and will have minimal, if any, increase on current student parking fees.”

The details are yet to be finalized, but the estimated cost of the structure is in the $11 million range.

“We are confident we can pay for it without imposing costs on students. We can also preserve green space,” said trustee Wayne Lowell.

Since this piece of land is on a 100-year flood plain, this is the only type of structure that could be constructed there. 

“The city is pretty vigorous about keeping La Mirada an urban city and we share that commitment.  We want to do something that does not bring negative impact on the city and community. Reality is we’re limited on land and if Biola in La Mirada is going to grow – we can only grow up,” said Wayne Lowell.

Please contact Jenna Bartlo, Media Relations Coordinator at (562) 777-4061 or through email at jenna.l.bartlo@biola.edu for interviews or further information on this story.

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Biola University is a private Christian university located in Southern California on the border of Los Angeles and Orange counties in the city of La Mirada. For over 100 years, Biola has remained committed to its biblical foundation, integrating biblical principles with every academic program. U.S. News & World Report recognizes Biola as a “National University,” which is considered the “major leagues” of higher education. In addition to its focus on intentional spiritual development and career preparation, Biola offers a unique academic environment where all faculty, staff and students are professing Christians. With over 145 academic programs in seven schools, Biola offers degrees ranging from B.A. to Ph.D. For more information, visit www.biola.edu or call (562) 777 – 4061.



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Biola University
13800 Biola Ave. La Mirada, CA 90639
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