Troubles with Parking on Campus

ESU Commuter Students vehicles flood “the pit” on campus. Photo credit / Kelly Dildine
ESU Commuter Students vehicles flood “the pit” on campus. Photo credit / Kelly Dildine

ESU Commuter Students vehicles flood “the pit” on campus.
Photo Credit / Kelly Dildine

BY COLLEEN RUPP

SC Staff Writer 

The biggest complaint on ESU’s campus is the lack of parking.

Since our campus consists of a majority of commuter students, you’d think we’d have parking garages all over the place, but this isn’t the case at ESU.

There are numerous places to park on campus, but they are never enough.  Commuters often complain about having to arrive almost an hour early just to get a spot.

Katrina Wagner, a second year graduate student and commuter finds the parking situation frustrating.

“There is nothing convenient or pleasant about parking at ESU,” said Wagner.  “As a graduate student I am at school for very long periods of the day, however, I have to arrive before eight AM to find a parking spot.  If I come after that time, I will most likely not find one and end up sitting in the parking lot until someone else leaves.”

Katrina is one of many students who have had to sit waiting in the parking lot hoping that someone leaves so they can steal a spot.

In August 2012 students were informed they have to pay for parking.

This caused a huge uproar, and most students on campus feel that paying for parking is unfair.

But when you talk to the police, you realize that the reason this payment is to get money for more parking spaces.

Student senate and other campus officials decided that the payment from parking permits might help fund some new parking locations on campus.

When you hear this, the idea does not sound so bad, except for the fact that most of us will have graduated when those parking locations are finally built.

Parking tickets for those who haven’t bought passes are a big burden.

If you get ticketed at a meter, it is going to cost a hefty $45, and you have to pay it to the borough, not ESU.

ESU is at least a little more reasonable with the normal ticket only costing $15.

So do you take your chances parking at the borough parking, or campus parking?

Both have issues, but most students seem to take their chances with the campus parking.

It is like luck of the draw: sometimes you luck out and don’t get a ticket, and other days you may have two tickets by the time you get back to your car.  This makes a lot of students angry.

Since parking issues are prominent, administration has finally decided to do something about it.

ESU administration hired a new manager of parking and transportation on the first day of this semester.

Richard Stoddard has only been in the position for about two months, and he already seems to be making more progress than his predecessor.

Officer Stoddard has started by getting to know the major issues of campus parking.

“Chief Olson and I are still in the process of working with various members of the ESU community to create an open dialogue about what works, what does not, and how we can all more effectively work together to continue to developing the parking program,” said Stoddard.

Stoddard and Chief Olson held a question and answer session at the Ridge to talk with students about their concerns and get ideas on how to improve the problems.

They really want to hear the problems and know how to make things better for students.

Not only are the officers trying to keep an open dialogue but they also plan to hold a focus group containing various different types of students.

They hope this will give them a better idea of what needs improvement, so that they can talk with the president and other administration to begin to implement changes.

Email Colleen at:

cer1810@live.esu.edu

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