UTAH TECH UNIVERSITY'S STUDENT NEWS SOURCE | April 15, 2024

New Campus View Suites III brings lack of parking to light

The lack of parking on campus is causing students to worry and is making them replan schedules because there is nowhere to park close to class. This has been an unsolved campus issue for a long time that does not appear to be changing anytime soon. Miki Akiyama | Sun News Daily

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Utah Tech University is one of the many schools across America that have continuing parking problems.

Depending on the time of day, almost all six campus parking lots get very full. Finding a parking spot can be competitive and hard to do, and most students will spend a long time circling parking lots on campus and end up not being able to find a spot at all.

Sarah Witt, a sophomore media studies major from Heber, said: “It’s easy most of the time to find a spot as long as you get there early and have time to scan the parking lot, but a lot of the time if you’re running a little bit late or you have a class at one of the busier parts of the day, it’s nearly impossible to find a spot.”

On top of the time that is taken while trying to find a parking spot, the parking spot is often on the opposite side of campus than where the student or faculty member is trying to go, adding an extra ten or more minutes to the commute. 

Utah Tech University has spoken in the past about the university’s master plan including a new parking garage to allow more available parking. This has yet to be finalized.

Jon Gibb, director of facility planning and construction, said the university will not start this new project until the campus runs out of parking completely. They will do their best to use surface-level parking first, having the first expansion be North of the SET building. If parking does end up running out, the parking garage would likely be located North of the Burns Arena.

For those students living on campus, the lack of parking is becoming more apparent with the new Campus View III suites being built. The parking lots near on-campus housing are predicted to be more full than before. The new building is to be doubled in size compared to the other two housing complexes. Therefore, more students who stay on campus will be taking parking spaces that could be used for students who live off-campus. 

Even for other campuses, this is a continuing problem. Parking is hard to figure out, especially with students coming and going all day long.

Nate Snow, an assistant professor of communications, said: “I’ve never been to a campus that had it figured out. I’ve been on small and large campuses all over the world, and every single one was crammed with cars, scooters and bikes.”

Things that students can do to help this ongoing dilemma is to carpool if possible. This will allow more parking availability for others who need it as well.

Gibb said that there is still parking available. It is just farther away than most would like. He said students will “for sure get their steps in.”

They can also be aware of the classes that are switching out. Sitting in your car for 20 to 30 minutes after a class can be frustrating to others who are trying to find a spot and get to class on time. Be aware of those around you and help keep the availability open.