Parking Problems

CHATTANOOGA, TENN. (mocsnews.com)

I have been a student at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) for four years, and in those four years, finding parking has been impossible. While that seems like a petty complaint, I think most students and faculty can agree that the biggest problem UTC faces is their lack of parking. Why is that? Year after year, students complain because of the parking and it seems not much has been done. 

The parking problem at UTC has been prevalent for the last decade. In 2010, enrollment went up by 2,000. That means less parking for everyone. A UTC student, in 2012, explains his trouble with finding parking on campus. He said, “Every day this week, I have had to leave my job an hour and a half early to drive around the campus for 45 minutes to an hour looking for a spot.” Not to mention, parking can be expensive. In 2012, the general parking passes were $110. It is hard enough making it to class on time, but to price something so high that does not guarantee a spot does not make sense. 

A parent spoke up about the struggles her child was having finding parking in 2012. Even with the purchase of a general lot parking pass, it was not unusual for her child to drive around for 1-2 hours before class looking for a parking spot. With general lot passes, you are still not guaranteed a parking spot, and may have to pay for street parking. Not to mention that if you do not move your car by the time the meter ends, you get a $25 ticket. If you are lucky, you can get the reserved pass. The parent said, “…when trying to purchase reserved permits, they are sold out months in advance to students who are already holding those spaces.” 

While UTC has many perks to it, parking is definitely not one of them. In the last decade, after so many complaints, something should have changed by now. UTC needs to have a fund that directly goes to building more parking for the students and faculty. I do not know how many years have to go by before someone fixes the problem that affects everyone at UTC. 

About Grace Spencer

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