Parking Troubles


Parking outisde of the Student Commons at Piedmont University has recently undergone some repainting. PHOTO // MATT KODROWSKI

Matthew Kodrowski, Opinions Editor

One year ago, you drove past the Student Commons to eat lunch. It was roughly 11:00 am. The cafeteria had been open for about fifteen more minutes. You looked and looked for a place to park. Finally, after multiple expletives having been said in your car, you gave up and either had to drive down the road to a parking lot further away from the Commons. Maybe you even gave up and drove towards Cornelia to Taco Bell or Chick-Fil-A because after all that parking trouble you deserve to treat yourself. 

The next year, when returning to campus hoping for more parking spots or a new parking lot, you instead find that the previous spots are simply slanted. Suddenly, you notice less available parking than before. It is the same scenario, only this time you are not the only student going down this stressful road.

“I definitely noticed [the parking lot] was different and more angled. Then I noticed that the Commons was more crowded,” said sophomore musical theatre Lexie Partain. “I’ll be having lunch soon and the chances of me finding a parking space are very low, so I may have to park a half a mile away. It is also more difficult to get into parking spaces if you are coming from the opposite direction the parking space is aligned.” 

This change may have been a surprise for the students, but this came as no surprise to the staff of Piedmont University.

 “For years that’s where we have most of our accidents on campus,” Piedmont University Campus Police Chief James Andrews says. “The visibility was very limited, so this is something that we had been working on for over the past two and a half years. So we finally made the decision to slant the parking places a little bit, and what that does is it gives students more visibility when backing up. Hopefully, it will reduce the number of accidents there.”

I understand the purpose of slanting the parking spaces. I understand that it is meant to increase the flow of traffic and help make backing out safer. However, it does not change that people still speed through campus, which causes the danger in the first place. Secondly, it does not change that some people still have issues of visibility backing out when they are parked next to a significantly larger vehicle. Lastly, it does not help that when the only open space is opposite your direction, drivers will make near u-turns just to park in it. Slanting the parking spots has removed a few extra spots in the process and those spaces are valuable.

There is no secret that parking is a problem on campus. I understand that parking lots are expensive. But the issue is less on the visibility of students backing out and more so on the speed of students going down the street. Maybe that means instead of the spaces you save money by adding speed bumps to help regulate how fast people go down Georgia Street. We the students appreciate the thought put into making the road safer for us, but we feel that this does more harm than the good it was intended to bring.