So, I got a ticket this morning. As a cadet I spend most mornings at the PAC doing PT. When the morning’s physical training concludes, it is common practice for everyone to go to breakfast. As a student that lives off campus, I drive to school every day and park in the only place permitted (for non-seniors) – the chapel lots. The walk from these lots to the dinning hall are pretty time consuming. So, if you’re in my position, you drive and park in the only available spaces near the dinning hall. This section is only listed as 30 minute parking. If I want to eat breakfast with my friends, it takes more than 30 minutes. Never the less I have been ticketed several times, some warranted and others (this morning) not. Thus, I have recently become inspired and more attuned to the problems with parking here at Furman. This issue applies to everyone. The lack of empathy for students among the ranks of the parking staff – as well as the parking situation in general – are issues that need to be addressed.
The Good: There are a lot of parking lots across campus in a wide variety of locations.
The Bad: Parking times are a maximum of 30 minutes next to dinning areas (Tone and DH). South Housing parking overflows every year. The University oversells permits for these lots, which forces many residents to park in the chapel lot. There is a lot right next to “SOHO” that is vacant year round due to it being closed to student access. The chapel lot is almost at capacity during class hours. Parking is enforced with zero grace extended. Non-time restricted lots are far away from the Trone Student Center and the dinning hall.
The Effects: (note that these are the opinions of myself and a few friends) It discourages students from eating on campus. Furman students begin to resent members of the police force. Inefficient use of lots results in almost max capacity parking
The conspiracy: Some students have voiced the concern that the Furman police officers collect a commission on tickets. A year ago a figure in the hundreds of thousands circulated through the student body. The theory is that Furman uses unfair parking policies to exploit money out of students. There is little evidence that I have seen that could hint at this being true.
While this conspiracy may not exactly have merit, it does reveal a sentiment of the driving population here at Furman. A proportion of the student nobody is unhappy with the way things are done. If you own a car while at Furman, avoiding getting a ticket is something you have to consciously think about every time you chose to get in your car. Furman’s current parking and enforcement policy seems to be inefficient and overly strict. It does not seem to be focused on serving the students. Solutions could range from easy to difficult, but any change would be welcome. On the easy side, the school could lengthen parking limits and increase parking access near dinning areas. While this would be a challenging and expensive idea, I believe a parking garage would do the university a lot of good as well. I know this post is not directly related to cars but it is something that effects every driver on campus.
I know this post is not directly related to cars but it is something that every driver should consider because it effects every driver on campus.