Many San Houston State University students came to the City Council meeting last night with speeches in hand to be heard by the members of the city as well as the citizens of Huntsville.
With most students asking for new shopping centers and later bar curfews, some students found received applause when they brought up the need for better lighting and safer streets in which many students walk or ride their bikes on.
“There are parts of Huntsville where the roads are extremely dark,” said SHSU student, Mark Casing. “The lighting situation is not where is should be here in Huntsville and it is not safe for our students to walk down the streets when it is pitch black outside.”
Along with the students, President James Gaertner was also in attendance last night thanking the students for coming out to share their opinions and concerns as well as adding a few of his own.
“SHSU should be a focal point in the growth and economic development of Hunstville and Walker County,” said Gaetner. “The city of Huntsville needs better jobs for our students and our faculty spouses.”
Gaetner also hit on topics such as: the redevelopment of the area between the campus and the square in efforts to connect the campus and the city, the great need for public transportation as well as allowing the bars to have a later closing time.
“When an establishment, such as a bar, closes earlier than normal, it forces students to get out on the highways to go to another bar that might stay open later,” said Gaetner. “We want to see the bars stay open a few hours later as well as promote reasonable student drinking.”
While places for families to live in Huntsville are scarce, a handful of people spoke up last night explaining the need for more quality- family focused housing in the city.
“It is difficult for my family to think about relocating to the Woodlands in search of a better home for us to live in,” said SHSU Faculty member, Alejandro Martinez. “The quality of living needs to be raised and while I am living in a good house here in Huntsville, it took me a while to find it, and I would like to see more quality homes come to the city.”
As many students continue to complain about the need for venues in Huntsville, a handful of SHSU students also expressed their needs for a shopping center.
“We need updated shopping,” said SHSU student, Sara Wilcox. “We have resale shops and antique shops, and while I like those types of places, I feel like we need more student-oriented shops. Just adding a few stores will bring greater revenue to the city, and it will also provide more jobs and possibly even better paying jobs to the students.”