Many Shepherd University commuters and residents have complained about parking on campus. The question is whether these complaints are justifiable or unreasonable.
There are nine parking lots on campus (A-Lot, B-Lot, C-Lot, D-Lot, E-Lot, F-Lot, G-Lot, H-Lot and I-Lot) and parking available on King Street. However, B-Lot and D-Lot are only available for faculty and staff and C-Lot is closed at all times, except for occasional use for loading and unloading. That leaves A, E, F, G, H, I and King Street for student parking. Lots A, F, G and King Street are all commuter-only parking. Lots E, H and I are for residential parking; these three lots are all on the west side of campus, which leads to many residents who live on east campus complaining about how far away they have to park from where they live.
John McAvoy, Shepherd University’s Chief of Police, can understand why students might get frustrated with campus parking. Most students wish to park in A-Lot because it’s the closest parking lot to the academic buildings. However, there are only 123 parking spaces in A-Lot. Chief McAvoy says that “it is unrealistic to think that every student with a car is going to be able to find that ‘prime’ parking space.” Although not all students are able to park in A-Lot, most try to and can end up wasting so much time driving around looking for an open spot that they could have parked on the other side of campus and then walked in the same amount of time.
Chief McAvoy advises students to park in H-Lot on west campus, which has 766 parking spaces. He acknowledges the fact that H-Lot is a bit of a walk away from most of the academic buildings and students do not wish to hike across campus with a backpack full of books. However, he feels if they make use of the Pan-Tran which runs at regular thirty-minute intervals they can make it across campus with no problem.
Although many students disagree with Chief McAvoy, they feel that even with H-Lot, there is still not enough parking for all the residents, commuters, and staff.
Jessica Gerber, an art education major, feels that there is definitely a problem with the parking at Shepherd. Particularly with residential parking, which is a complaint often heard. Jessica says that “E-Lot and H-Lot are only convenient to those students who live on that side of the campus.”
She’s not alone in how she feels. Taylor Coleman, a history major, says that “it sucks when you have a lot of stuff with you and you have to haul it all in.”
Hannah Garver, a Shepherd University visitor, gave her opinion on parking saying that “it’s almost not even worth it to have your car on campus when you have to take a bus to get to it.”