Parking challenges for students

Note:  Corrections were made to this story, which previously claimed that staff of the Whitworth Presbyterian Church were distributing the notes. This is untrue; the notes came from university officials with no affiliation to the church. The Whitworthian apologizes for this error, and thanks Faith Alderete, director of operations at Whitworth Presbyterian, for making the correction.

by Skyler Noble 

Parking on Whitworth campus has become a stressor to many students and staff. With the ongoing construction of the music building, many people are becoming more and more frustrated with the lack of parking. It’s becoming a campus-wide inconvenience.

With the limited resident parking by Warren Hall due to construction, many residents and staff have to adjust where they park their cars. Some may park across the street or in a different lot, causing other student residents and staff members with cars to park places further away from their dorms and classrooms.

“Our original anticipation was that the construction of the music building would be a burden to students who lived on the west side of campus,” said ASWU President, Justin Botejue.

Though I don’t have a car myself, I have friends who come back to campus after a trip to the store and spend a good five minutes trying to find a spot in the B1 or B2 parking lots. The lack of parking forces students to park either in the “no overnight visitor parking” or the Whitworth Presbyterian Church lot. Students and staff should not have to stress about where they are going to park whenever they want to leave or come back to campus.

With the increase of students parking in these typically “No Parking” areas, university staff are distributing notes that read, “WHITWORTH STUDENTS MAY NOT PARK IN THIS LOT. PLEASE FIND THE APPROPRIATE STUDENT LOT. IN THE FUTURE, YOUR VEHICLE MAY BE CITED OR TOWED IF PARKED HERE.”

But where is the appropriate lot anymore? If students attempt to park in the no overnight for a night, they will get a parking violation citation. We shouldn’t have to worry about receiving such violations if there is a parking obstruction.

Additionally, off-campus students are struggling to find parking for the little time they spend on campus per day. Some people have been riding their bikes to school to avoid the parking conflict, but what will they do when they have to get to their classes in snowy and cold weather conditions?

“Students have to register their vehicles. Whitworth has more parking than what the county requires for an institution this size. The thing is that it’s not very convenient,” Botejue said. “When students register their vehicles, they have to park in a certain area across campus. Security can better enforce this if students register their cars.”

Hopefully the parking issue won’t be as prevalent as the year progresses. But for now, it is a major inconvenience to everyone on campus, not just the student residents.

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