One major problem at many universities across America is campus parking for students. The number of students and faculty is high, but parking spots are limited.
One of the universities that is affected by this conflict is our own. I feel that there are many students who have to plan their whole day around scheduling parking time alone.
At the start of each semester, parking is at its all-time worst. There are more students who commute than there are commuter parking spaces. This leads to many students receiving parking violation tickets from the Transportation Services. I feel like if the university does not increase commuter parking, then this cycle of parking tickets will never end, and Transportation Services will reap the reward.
Another major concern I see with our campus’s parking situation is the number of empty faculty parking spaces. Generally, the parking lots closest to each building are faculty parking spaces. There have been countless situations where there are a plethora of empty spaces, but students are still circling parking lots to find a spot. I feel the reason for this is because there are far more spaces than faculty.
A simple solution to this problem with empty faculty parking spaces is to have certain lots with both commuter and faculty spaces. This would ensure that all spaces would be used accordingly, and everyone stays happy.
I feel that the parking problem leads students to a less productive school day. When students cannot find a spot, they show up to class late, and that’s if they decide to show up at all. This affects students directly because now their grades and education are at risk.
Last school year, I lived on campus but quickly grew tired and decided to become a commuter this semester. I thought to myself, “I can schedule 9:30 classes, sleep until 8 and leave my apartment for 8:45 to find adequate parking,” but instead, I have to leave my apartment at 8 just to find a decent parking spot.
Along with blending both faculty and commuter parking, another solution I feel would be appropriate for more parking spots is to expand on the parking garage next to Strawberry Stadium. Currently, it is a 4-level garage with the top level designed for media purposes for sporting events. I feel if you expand and add on three more levels of parking, the campus traffic would flow a lot smoother, and other parking lots will be less congested. Another pro to this solution is that you do not have to purchase more land, and you are adding to what you originally had. This would allow for more parking spots and could possibly lead to more revenue for game days at Strawberry Stadium.
Another solution I see as feasible is making the field north of the Pat Kenelly Diamond at Alumni Field a parking lot. Currently, it is an empty field barricaded by fences and is rarely ever used. The location does not disturb any classes and evens out parking spaces. I feel that this way may be the most effective and use the most out of all the parking lots. It is close enough to the center of campus and is in a well-lit area that is easy to patrol.
I understand that some students complain about parking spaces because of the distance, but we should never accommodate the lazy. I understand that freshmen commuter parking is the farthest away on campus, but they do not have to worry if there are enough spots because that is the biggest parking lot on campus. A simple solution to the far walk is to take the LionsTraxx shuttle bus.
I understand that we are not the only university with this problem. Why not change this issue and make our school better? Attendance in classrooms will increase, parking tickets will decrease and traffic problems will decrease significantly.