Residents of Dorchester’s Savin Hill are considering restrictions to block college students and commuters from parking in the neighborhood, a debate that has split neighbors on how much to share on-street spaces with the broader community.

Some say the restrictions would be unwelcoming and inconvenient for visitors. Others complain they need to reserve parking spaces from the onslaught of UMass Boston students who head to the nearby campus and commuters who leave their cars before hopping on the Red Line at Savin Hill station.

The city's transportation department says resident permit parking is present in parts of virtually every neighborhood, particularly on streets close to MBTA stops. A spokesperson said the department has not estimated what percentage of city streets is restricted to residents at least during certain hours.

“You go out to go to the grocery store, you come back, and the space is gone. And then, you have to lug your groceries from God knows where, or you have to park illegally for a moment to unload your car,” said Kathy Goode, who lives on Grampian Way in Savin Hill.

Goode's street is one of three in the neighborhood where residents have collected signatures in support of implementing new parking rules, according to the transportation department. The other two streets are Evandale Terrace and Savin Hill Avenue. Goode is one of about 170 residents who signed the petition.

“I really do think we need some solution because there’s too many cars on the street,” she said in an interview.

But some view street parking as a public amenity to be shared freely among residents and neighbors in the surrounding community. At a contentious October meeting on the issue, a room of about 50 people was nearly split between those who want the restrictions and those who don't.

“From my view point, this is really just about reducing available parking for visitors,” said one man between interruptions at the Dorchester Yacht Club meeting. “I think it’s very restrictive, there’s nothing neighborly about it, and who actually cares if someone gets a free parking spot?” he added to applause from half the room.

“I do,” a woman piped back, as others clamored to be the next to speak.

At the meeting, William Conroy, a Savin Hill resident and senior planner with the transportation department, presented a plan to institute resident restrictions on virtually all streets in the neighborhood — a preemptive step to prevent the parking problem from moving to different streets. The new rules would apply weekdays between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., with a few spots near park grounds exempted for two hours. The proposal does not include provisions for visitor passes.

Some residents, like Chris Montani, called for the plan to be pared down.

“While I appreciate the concept that you want to cover the entire neighborhood, I really think you’re blowing this out of proportion. I personally don’t want to see any restrictions on my little street,” he said, referring to Rockmere Street. “No one came to my street and no one signed [the petition] on my street as far as I know. So why are we even on this list?”

Other opponents said the new rule would add complications with childcare, elderly and special needs home care, service providers, and friends and family who come to visit with cars.

WGBH interviewed several students and staff at UMass Boston who said the restrictions would also cause a hardship for those at the mainly commuter school.

“The parking pass for students is fairly high,” said UMass Boston student Romeo Cuevas, 18. “I don’t have money for that, so it’s a lot cheaper to just take a 15-minute walk.”

UMass Boston lists on-campus student parking passes as $504 per semester or $360 for 30 single-use passes in that period.

Juan Pablo Blanco, a staff member and two-time UMass Boston graduate said he too commuted to school and parked in Dorchester. For him, driving between Worcester and Boston for school and work was cheaper and more reliable than taking public transportation. He sympathizes with the residents’ plight, but said neighborhood parking restrictions would make attending the nearby school more difficult.

“I understand how challenging it is to find parking for your own car when you live there, ... but I think it’s going to become another barrier for working-class students to make it to UMass Boston,” Blanco said in a phone interview. “I think we should really try to work together instead of against each other to try to make sure that the Dorchester community as a whole — including UMass Boston — can actually benefit from having an institution in its backyard.”

City Councilor Frank Baker, who represents the area, declined to be interviewed for this story. But when asked at the October meeting if the university might ease its parking fees to address the issue, he suggested the school is not a good community partner.

“UMass isn’t interested in our parking needs. I’ve mentioned it to them, but they’re not really interested, to be totally honest,” he said.

UMass Boston officials also declined a request for an interview. Spokesperson DeWayne Lehman said in a statement, “Our ability to regulate parking is limited to our campus, but we are working with the City if Boston and elected officials to offer any assistance we can with issues beyond our campus.”

Lehman also noted the school provides free shuttle buses to and from the JFK/UMass station on the Red Line and encourages students, faculty and staff to take public transportation.

Goode, who did not attend the October meeting, said she’s willing to compromise. She proposes a nightly parking restriction that would leave the streets open until about 5 p.m., when many people return home from work.

“Our neighbors [at] the college [and] neighbors that work at local businesses that might need to park during the day to get to their jobs or to school, ... I don’t have a problem with them parking during the day,” Goode said. “But then, also leave space for the people who actually live in the residences to get a spot when they come home at night.”

City officials say there is no timeline for a decision to be made, and resident restrictions — if implemented — will likely not arrive before the new year.