Like vultures stalking their prey, many students circle the parking lot numerous times daily before spotting a vacant space.
“Parking is a mess. I drove around the little Durward (Hall) lot three times and never found a space. I had to park in the tow-away zone,” said Zach Adams, a freshman history major.
Many students think this frustrating experience is all too common.
There are roughly 13,000 parking spaces on campus and about 14,900 parking permits sold each year, resulting sometimes in too few spaces for too many cars.
Parking permit prices were raised this year. It now costs a student who is living on campus $110 for a permit, faculty and staff $95, commuter students $85 and motorcyclists $45.
The extra money University Parking Services receives this year will go toward parking maintenance and construction fees.
“All of the money is used to support parking services,” said Michael Rose, director of University Parking Services. “The money is not put towards anything else.”
There were approximately 365 new paved spaces added this year.
“We added two commuter lots. One near Christiansen Field and another in the Painter lot near the Clark Building,” Rose said.
Parking services spent approximately $510,000 to pave the lot near Christiansen Field on the east side of campus, just off South College Avenue, which was previously a dirt lot.
Both new lots included dirt parking spaces last year, but paving the lots has provided many more spaces.
“People won’t park as close together in a dirt lot as they would in a paved lot,” Rose said.
Parking services paved these lots in an effort to add more spaces closer to the campus’ center.
Although there are more parking places on campus this year, some students simply choose to avoid the hassle of parking altogether.
“The parking lot is ridiculously insane. Once I spent 10 minutes looking for a parking spot and that’s why I am going to walk to class,” said Brittney Kipp, a freshman Spanish major.
While some students choose to walk, others will continue to circle the lots.
Parking services encourages students to be patient.
“Ideally, we would like to build garages some day,” Rose said. “But it costs approximately $3,000 per (outdoor) space and it would cost $10,000 per space built in a garage.”
On campus students- $110
Commuter Students- $85