Students share opinions of parking system

Gannon University has recently experienced some difficulties with student parking on campus.

Currently, students may purchase a permit and park on virtually any lot on campus. The positive aspect of the system is that driving students have the option to park wherever they desire, which allows a shorter walk to their destination. The issue with the current parking system is that anyone can occupy any space, which can be an inconvenience for students who usually park in the lots of their respective residence halls or apartment buildings.

Another apparent flaw with the parking system is that parking permits distributed exceed parking spaces available.

Many students have complained about the parking issue and believe that it could be improved.

Allyce Cooper, a senior psychology major, is a student living in housing who does not believe the current system is as efficient as possible.

“I have mixed feelings about it,” she said. “I always have issues trying to find a spot near the housing I live in.”

Next year, Gannon will integrate a new parking system. The parking will consist of color coding in order to avoid confusion for parking students on campus. Residence hall parking lots will be labeled a certain color and will be available only to residents of that building. For instance, Lubiak residents will park in Lubiak parking lot under the color green and Kenilworth lot residents will park in the Kenilworth under blue.

Theodore Marnen, the assistant director of Gannon Police and Safety, has been at the head of the development of the color-coded parking system plan. Apparently, parking is not a completely new issue on campus, but one that has been ongoing.

“Parking is always a problem,” Marnen said. “We are trying to find better ways to accommodate the students.”

Marnen said that the new parking system is mainly aimed toward resident students, who often cannot park in the respective spaces of their buildings due to their spaces being occupied.

Parking permits will still be issued by Student Services, but by the number of spaces available – a change from the previous system.

Students will be sold permits based on their year. Seniors get the first chance on the parking lots, juniors second, and then sophomores.

“Seniors are given priority and any ties will be broken by GPAs,” Marnen says.

Despite having a new parking system next year, freshmen will remain unable to purchase permits.

Freshmen will continue to park on the street, in nearby parking lots or town garages.

Lexi Mastro, a freshman physician assistant major, vice president of academic affairs of Student Government Association, and public relations chair of Activities Programming Board said she believes that the new system will benefit students.

“I think it is a great idea,” Mastro said. “Then students should always be able to get parking where they need it most—their residence. This will decrease the number of displaced student-drivers.”

Student Services believes that freshmen should not be issued parking spaces due to driving being an unnecessary distraction to the first year of college for a student.

Aside from being a distraction, not many freshman purchase spaces anyway.

Recently, the parking plan proposed by Theodore Marnen has been approved. The system will be applied starting this fall and will hopefully solve many of the problems posed now. Next year, parking will have a new color on campus.


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