Faculty parking hindered all in name of campus expansion

Construction has caused some of FAMU’s faculty to find new places to park. Construction has begun on a new building for the School of Journalism and Graphic Communication and an extension of Coleman Library.

The faculty who parks in the Orr Drive gated parking lot has permits. The lot allows easy access to Tucker Hall, the Gore Education Complex and Coleman Library.

John Kirby, director of university parking services, said a memo was sent to all holders of a gated parking lot permit. The memo, first sent in April 2001, stated that parking in the Orr Drive lot would be discontinued for Spring 2002 due to construction.

“We placed the information on windshields and a flyer was sent to various departments,” Kirby said.

Only faculty with a gated lot permit and students with disability permits could park in the lot.

“The only legal parkers now are the ones who have been assigned on the east side of the driveway,” Kirby said.

The news hit faculty in different ways. As dean of graduate studies, Anna Vaughn-Cooke has a reserved parking space.

“I received the memo in time to make the transition,” Vaughn-Cooke said. “Changing my parking space is a minor contribution to the process of achieving the goals of constructing new buildings for the university,” she said.

Others found the changes shocking and troublesome.

“I didn’t get the memo. I pay, I should be guaranteed a parking space,” said Janet McCray, program assistant in the Department of Vocational Education. “We should not have to suffer for a parking space,” she said.

Kirby said that the gated parking permit allows drivers to park in five different lots (four now that the Orr Drive lot is closed). Faculty can park in SBI West, SBI East, the Science Research Center or any employee lot. Deans and associate deans, who have reserve spaces, have been relocated to FAMU DRS parking lot.

According to the director of facility planning and construction, Sam Houston, construction is scheduled for 14 months.