Campus parking can be an absolute nightmare, especially if you are running a bit behind. Finding a convenient space is virtually impossible between 9:00a.m. and 2p.m.
Â Â â€œYou have to get here early to get a good spot or walk a country mile,â€ said Kristen McKinney, a junior majoring in communications. She is right. The fact is, there are always available parking spaces on campus; they are just not convenient. The world wants convenience in everything; drive-up banking, drive-up restaurants and drive-through stores. The list is endless. â€œThey need to build more lots or change the restricted parking.â€ McKinney said.
Restricted spaces are for faculty. Some faculty members feel like the students, that there are not enough restricted spaces. â€œI have driven around for 30 minutes looking for a space.â€ Debby Bogle, associate professor of education said. â€œWe used to be able to park in student spaces if restricted parking was full, but not any more.â€ Bogle feels that assigned spaces for faculty would alleviate the problem.Â Â
Â Currently there are approximately 3300 parking spaces on campus according to Jon Kelley, chief of Campus Police. â€œIâ€™ve been here 18 years and there have been comÂplaints about parking for 18 years,â€ Kelley said. Parking complaints are a perennial problem and there is a solution; Park in a different lot that might not be as convenient and walk. This would be effective for students and faculty.
According to an e-mail from Kelley, there are 4,973 registered vehicles belonging to 4,103 parking customers. The problem is not a lack of parking spaces; it is a lack of willingness to walk a few extra yards.
Kelley also wrote, â€œThe average number of parking citations issued per semester over the last three spring semesters is 4,256 and 4,284 for the fall semesters.â€ At a minimum of $25 per ticket, that adds up to an average of over $213 thousand per year.Â Â Â
According to Kelleyâ€™s e-mail, â€œTraffic fines revenue is used mainly to operate all of the activities related to parking services.â€ This includes expenses for purchasing and maintaining various equipment, personnel required, parking decals and the ticket stock.
Â Â Â Â Parking is only a nightmare if students allow it to be. Students have three choices: They can get here early to secure a good space, they can drive around waiting for a space or they can park immediately and walk a few minutes. The economical, not to mention healthy, choice would be to park in a less convenient space and get a few minutes of exercise walking to class.Â