Enrollment increase leads to parking shortage

An increase in enrollment has made it difficult to accommodate many Gannon University commuters with offstreet parking.

About 4,200 students are enrolled at Gannon this year.

Rose Ann Garbulinski, an office specialist with Campus Police and Safety, said since enrollment has gone up, the need for more parking on campus has increased significantly. This year Gannon sold more parking passes than ever before.

Passes are sold on a first-come, first-served basis, according to University Parking Services. Fall semester parking passes were sold in late August. All unclaimed spots are entered into a “lottery” and are allotted to students who need them.

Gannon has parking garages downtown where commuters are able to park. These garages are not owned by Gannon, but are able to subsidize a limited amount of students. One ramp is located on Eighth Street between Sassafras and Peach streets. The other ramp is located on the corner of Seventh and Peach streets. Garbulinski said these spaces were filled immediately, this year.

Students in need of a parking permit for offstreet parking have been wait listed.

“Last year we had a waiting list of 30 students,” Garbulinski said. “All were able to be accommodated with a space.”

This year the waiting list has grown to 60 students and parking services are very limited.

Gannon is trying to acquire more spaces for parking this semester. Nothing has been finalized but there is a need to add an outdoor lot or ramp, Garbulinski said.

“Parking is a major inconvenience,” Ashley Buzzell, a commuter and a junior journalism communications major said.

Because parking passes for the accommodated spots can get expensive for commuters, Buzzell said she feels that there should be offstreet parking that is free for Gannon students.

“To pay $259 a semester to park in a parking authority ramp is a lot of money,” Buzzell said. “I receive about one ticket a month from the Parking Authority.”

The same rules apply as they have in past years when it comes to parking. Vehicles need a valid parking sticker to park in certain, designated areas. The sticker must be placed on the driver’s side rear bumper. Permits not on the rear bumper are considered invalid.

Vehicles in areas that are unauthorized may receive a citation. Unauthorized locations include reserved parking spaces and lots, handicapped spaces, fire lanes, walkways and sidewalks. Citations are a minimum of $10 and cannot be voided.

Illegally parked vehicles without a parking sticker are subject to be booted or towed at the owner’s expense. Boots cost the owner of the vehicle $25 to remove. Unclaimed booted vehicles will be towed at an additional charge to the owner.

During some special events on the Gannon campus, restrictions will be waived to accommodate drivers.

Parking regulations can be obtained by contacting the Campus Police and Safety office at 814-871-7690.


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