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Free parking on Cambridge campus: an update

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Kirran Khan is your Vice President Business, here he gives an update on parking and transport options on ARU Cambridge campus: 


Hi guys!

A few months ago, the idea of free parking on campus was posted on the SU Ideas page.  The page is a place for you to submit ideas that you have and want to see done; and if an idea gets 25 ‘likes’ or more,  the SU work with you to make it happen. At the time of writing this, the Free Parking on Campus idea has 41 likes, so I took it on and investigated how it could be done.


I found out that a lot of commuting students in Cambridge felt that the Park and Ride system already in place took a while to get into the city centre (whether that’s the Grafton Centre, or Drummer Street Bus Station) due to a lot of traffic. Students also expressed a want for a free parking pass as the Park and Ride system had increased in price (it’s now at £4 a day).


After emailing Julie Walkling (Head of Student Services) she explained that ARU, along with the University of Cambridge, are bound by local regulations around parking. This means that ARU have to discourage students from parking, as per an agreement with Cambridge County Council.  She went on to say that students and staff are encouraged to use the park and ride system.


Ultimately, because of the council agreement, free parking for students isn’t possible. However, we’re not giving up. We want to continue to ensure that students are still able to afford to commute into campus. I’m in the process of approaching the College of West Anglia, Cambridge Regional College and Cambridge University Students’ Union to see if we can jointly lobby the County Council to give our students a discount on the park and ride service in Cambridge.


If you have any comments, or would like to get involved, please get in touch.






Erica Phiri
4:32pm on 22 Jan 18 Thank you for championing this as it is really hard to fund the journey into university and then pay loads towards parking as well
Auriane Cirasuolo
9:32pm on 18 Jan 18 This is amazing ! It might save me from leaving my house at 6.45am to take the train, I could finally sleep yeahhhh ! And I would save so much money... Great !
Julie Carter
10:28am on 18 Jan 18 This is a great idea. My timetable allowed me to park on streets surrounding the campus last semester which actually worked out cheaper than the park and ride which I've used religiously for the last 3 years. It can't be right that a system intended to reduce traffic in the city is more expensive then on street parking.
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