The population of campuses and universities is on the increase with each passing semester. These figures suggest that parking is inefficient and the level rises per semester. Parking is one of the biggest deficiencies that universities all over the world are facing. A clear example of this is the present situation on our campus, where most students are left with no choice but to use other modes of travel, which is often inefficient and tiresome (pitsiava- Latinopoulou 320). Many people have tried to come up with solutions to this issue, but so far their attempts have borne no fruit. The problem does not affect only the students but also extends to other faculty members. In addition to population increase (riggs 168), there is also an increase in the students who own individual cars. Faculty members have also moved out and now reside outside the school premises hence an increase in the demand for parking space. The problem is really a force to reckon with. Parking problems affect all the individuals that are interested in accessing the campuses hence proving to be a problem for everyone. Students are the hardest hit since they pay for the service, which is not delivered to them as per their expectations (Aoun et al 58). This is a worldwide problem that affects all the campuses in the developed nations and some of the developing countries. Solutions have been sought by the universities’ faculties, engineers, students and also other stakeholders that are not directly affected but would love to provide their assistance.
Florida State University, for example, is armed with 5647 parking spaces in total, which are to cater for over 41000 students, where 33000 have their premises outside the campus. This is a whole 81% of students who get to school every day, and at some point will need some parking space.
Students state the cost as being too high for some of them who do not have any other means of getting to school and who cannot park outside the school due to the distance to the classrooms. The first problem, which is quite obvious, is the cost problem. Students pay a lot of money for the parking spaces, which are not an assured deal. The students gamble the chances of getting parking spaces which are very minimal against the ever growing student population.
Parking locations are also a bone of contention. The only available parking may be blocks away from the classrooms where the student is supposed to receive their lectures. The students who might have thought that bringing their cars to school would be efficient and time saving would end up getting late for the same classrooms due to the distance from the parking spot to the classrooms. The lecturers are also not spared in this menace. This shortcoming, for example, has very few solutions some which are impossible to implement (cardei et al 12). The students and the faculty therefore have to bear with it or look for an alternative means of getting to the classroom on time.
Some of the parking spots have priorities. A student could be paying a very huge amount every year only to be pushed to parking spots that are far away from his classrooms or place of interest in the campus. This is so unfair as the student will have to leave empty spots which are preserved for people who might not even be showing up for the day. Among the prioritized spot holders includes the faculty.
The above problems have been countered using various techniques and methods (G. e. al 92), some which have failed while others have proved to be impossible to implement. The above problems have been countered using various techniques and methods, some which have failed while others have proved to be impossible to implement. In some universities, most of the spots are often on lock down and are preserved for events despite the growing spot deficiency. This means employing a problem over another problem.
Some of the universities have come up with an app that helps in solving some bit of the menace. The application estimates the number of parking spots available for the students to park. This is done by calculating the number of cars that have made their way in to the campus and then Lessing them from the number of available parking spots. The app cannot be really relied on a solution to the problem (pitsiava- Latinopoulou 318), since it just gives information on the available spot, and does not indicate where the spots are which and that is the greatest problem.
The move to charge students on parking spots also seems to be bearing some fruits. The charge becomes an expense to the student drivers where they put their preference on attending their classes using other means. This means that fewer students will bring their cars to school hence reducing the problem of parking spaces and also the problem of congestion on roads. But all the same, the fees charged are at times very low and have very less or zero effects on the number of cars that drive in to the campus. An increase in the amount of charges on the parking spots would bring rise to chaos from the students hence making the solution applicable but with very little effect.
Encouraging the use of other means, other than personal cars, to school is the best solution so far. But the main question is; are the students willing to let go of their cars and use public means or bicycles to school? The answer is of course no and that is the main issue of concern. For the students to dance to that tune there is need for a lot of public awareness on the importance of employing the use of these other means of transport. The other means of transport (pitsiava- Latinopoulou 310) include Regional Transit system (RTS) bus which is free to all students provided they are in possession of an ID card, bicycle, motorbikes and scooters just but to name a few.
Parking in universities is therefore a major concern and there is need to have all the campuses intervene. This will make learning more efficient and therefore making students concentrate more on their studies and not on the parking spaces (riggs 170). Coming up with solutions for the same is quite difficult but there is need to adopt the ideas given, which include automation, for the time being.
Riggs, William. “Dealing with parking issues on an urban campus: The case of UC Berkeley.” Case Studies on Transport Policy 2.3 (2014): 168-176.
Aoun, Alisar, et al. “Reducing parking demand and traffic congestion at the American University of Beirut.” Transport Policy 25 (2013): 52-60.
Guo, Liya, Shan Huang, and Adel W. Sadek. “A novel agent-based transportation model of a university campus with application to quantifying the environmental cost of parking search.” Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice 50 (2013): 86-104.
Cardei, Mihaela, et al. “Campus assistant application on an android platform.” Southeastcon, 2013 Proceedings of IEEE. IEEE, 2013.
Pitsiava-Latinopoulou, Magda, Socrates Basbas, and Nikolaos Gavanas. “Implementation of alternative transport networks in university campuses: The case of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece.” International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education 14.3 (2013): 310-323.