Plagued by parking

Emily Echevarria, Student Government Reporter

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It’s arguably the worst part of the day, a time that inspires dread and malcontent in all. Trying to find parking on UNF’s campus is no joke.

Parking on campus can sometimes take up to an hour, and students are often forced to weigh the consequences of parking in the wrong spot or being late to class. It’s not a choice students should have to make, and UNF Student Government recognizes that the situation with parking needs to change.

The University and Student Affairs Committee created an Osprey Voice survey to present to students, both online and during Market Days, to gauge opinion on parking on campus. Questions in the survey included whether students had ever been late to class due to parking and whether they thought their parking pass was worth the price they paid. 

The survey period ended Wednesday, Sept. 25, and Chairwoman Kayla Dougherty presented the results in Senate on Oct. 4. 

The survey garnered 1,342 responses from students and found that most are dissatisfied with parking on campus, as was suspected. 73.8% of students who took the survey reported that they had been late to class due to struggling to find parking.

58.7% of students who reported that they purchased a blue lot pass said that parking on campus was very difficult, and 77.9% of blue lot users felt that their permit was not worth the price they paid for it. It’s a problem many of us have been faced with– we pay the extra money for a blue lot pass, and yet more often than not, we have to park in a gray lot. 

Students, when faced with the dilemma of walking a mile to class in the Florida heat or getting a parking ticket, often choose the ticket, finding it worth it to pay the $30 rather than to sweat through their clothes. Parking in the incorrect lot, or even in a spot marked for 20 minute parking, is a way many students accrue tickets. 

The USA Committee drafted the survey in hopes of using student opinion to find a solution to their parking woes. 47.5% of students reported that they would accept an increase in parking pass prices if more parking was added to campus.

In the meantime, the Judicial Branch is working to address concerns about the tickets student get when forced to park in the incorrect place. Making sure students know about the ticket appeals process is a high priority. 

Going forward with these results, Student Government will be looking into ways to alleviate parking struggles or possibly add more convenient parking to campus. This task is not an easy one though, and will take time to produce meaningful change.

Spinnaker will keep you updated on any new developments.

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