Will the New Parking Garage Fix the Overcrowded Lots?

BY: Rachel Sherman

A new three-story parking garage is being built for Shenandoah University! Opening in May of 2018, the garage will house 300 parking spaces inside with more spaces surrounding the building. It will be located off I-81 where the old athletic training field, “The Rock”, was located. Due to the overcrowded parking lots, many students are excited for this new lot. While it hasn’t been officially decided yet, it has been announced that the incoming residential freshmen will be required to park there.

Some students worry that the new garage will not be much help to the commuting students of Shenandoah. Cindy King, a freshman, stated that she worried the distance from campus will be too much for them. “Certain parking lots are always full because they’re popular. They’re the prime places for people to park because there’s little walking needed to get from their car to their dorm or class” she told me. In addition, Kendall Melton, a sophomore, added that “it’s not at a good location for students so I think it’s a waste. It should be built where all students can access it”.

Many students however are hopeful that the parking garage will help with the overcrowding. Morgan Smith, a junior, shared that “I think it would because it is pretty difficult to find a parking spot during the day”. Kaity De, a senior, added that she is sure that it will help the students with classes in the athletic center. Tony Matteson Jr. said that he was confident it would help. He did make the same argument that due to distance, people may complain.

So, what should be done? In my opinion, the distance is worrisome. If people will be parking there, there needs to be a safe way to get to campus. Either we need a better shuttle system or a safe walk path to and from campus. The idea that the garage will be for resident students seems to be a good idea, as long as it leaves spaces available for students with classes or training in the athletic center. As a commuter, I can speak on a personal level that it is problematic to find spaces for classes at any time of the day. If the people that lived on campus had designated spots, it would make it easier for commuters to find spots. But the people who live there would need a safe and easy way back to their dorms and classes. Ultimately, I think the new garage is a great idea, but we’ll see how students handle the distance.

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