Parking Services officials said that students should pay for their parking tickets if they want to see improved parking and avoid registration holds in the future.
According to Mary Adams, assistant director for Parking Services, many students on campus are not paying tickets when they receive them.
“There is a very low percentage of students who actually pay for their tickets voluntarily,” Adams said. “There are some who do, but unless we put the students on hold, they don’t pay them.”
Some students, like Courtney Gant, a sophomore accounting student from Walterboro, S.C., do not think that paying their tickets will make much of a difference.
“I don’t think it would help anything,” Gant said. “They wasted money on putting a bunch of squiggly sidewalks by Osceola St. That could have been parking.”
Parking services receives close to $1 million a year from parking fees paid by students and faculty.
“All of the revenue is applied toward supporting the infrastructure, including lots and the cost of shuttle services,” Adams said.
But building new parking lots on campus can be a challenge for the budget and on-campus building planners.
“There is a proposal in its infant stages for one or more general lots,” Adams said. “However, we have to consider the cost of clearing the property, gravel costs and markings for spaces which all have to be paid for by Parking Services.”
Physical Plant Director Kendall Jones confirmed that there are new temporary and permanent lots being planned but the process is tedious and costly. Jones said a temporary lot is in the plans at Perry and Eugenia Streets and is estimated at $27,000. It will contain 151 spaces and will be finished before the end of the semester. Jones also said that they are “in the process of ordering materials” for the lot.
To date, three temporary lots have been added to the campus for general parking to help relieve the still growing parking situation. But some students feel like the new lots are not enough.
“They took a long time to build them but they still aren’t big enough,” said Sandhya Harris, a freshman business administration student from Atlanta.
Adams hopes that added spaces will be a remedy to the amount of tickets that are written and go unpaid so more students will not have holds placed on their registration.
“We don’t want to have to put students on hold,” she said. “We want to educate students to help them avoid getting violations. I encourage students to pay them quickly and as promptly as they can.”
Alexia Robinson can be reached at ARRobinson@aol.com