Clemson’s parking is truly catastrophic: Something must be done
Can you hear the people sing
Clemson Parking Services. Doing us dirty, daily. Forcing commuting students to buy a 148 dollar sticker, which gives us the right to stalk our classmates to their cars.
With that sticker you can’t park at a metered spot, because it is for visitors only. Makes sense. The morning routine below illustrates the effects of limited parking on an overcrowded campus whose number one goal is to make a profit.
8am: Alarm goes off
You went to bed four hours ago. You were up studying and doing homework. Class doesn’t start until 10am.
You have to leave by 8:30 or you won’t get to class on time. It’s been two days since your last shower. After thirty seconds of contemplation you hit snooze because dry shampoo.
8:40am Running out the door
So you may have hit snooze three more times than you meant. Wearing a baseball bag and eating a breakfast bar you throw your backpack into the car and head to campus. Hoping that leaving an hour and twenty minutes before class isn’t too late.
8:55am On Campus
After hitting every light and getting stuck behind that one girl Snapchatting the entire way to school you have finally made it.
By made it, I mean you made it the long line for C1. You make your way to the new 4- way stop and death glare each and every one of the people who stroll across the street towards their class because they may have taken the last spot.
9:05am Rolling through the pit
The first rows are full. You expected this. You drive straight to the back of C1. “Closer” plays on the radio and you hope it’s a sign you’re getting closer to finding a parking spot. Nope. Full.
You aggressively whip your car towards the Perimeter Road exit. There’s a line of cars, about five deep. These cars become your competition, but also your friends.
The bond that stems from the hatred of Clemson Parking Services is so strong that you can’t help but feel connected to your fellow sleep-deprived commuters.
9:12am The procession of cars rolls into Brooks
All five cars have the same mentality: “gonna try Brooks, just to see if I’m lucky. ” You break off from the line, hoping you’ll find someone leaving campus after an 8am.
Not today. You head toward the exit and relink with your five new friends. Hey guys. Ha, none of you found spot’s either. Wait, no, that means I have to get to Lee before you do.
9:20am Tokyo drifting down perimeter towards the lower lot near Lee
Do you get in the right lane and try the upper Lee lot? Or keep left and then merge right before the exit into lower Lee? It’s 9:22. . . Lower Lee it is.
You use your peripheral vision to assess the situation. Three spots left in the back row. The odds are against you but you try anyway. It’s a fail
9:27am You wonder: should I park in an employee spot and risk the ticket?
Your bank account has ten dollars in it. You can’t afford a sixty dollar orange slip.
9:37am Parked in the Stadium Lot
Try to get the shuttle. It’s full. You look at the hill you have to trek up to get to campus.
9:45am Is this a sign I shouldn’t go to class?
After the battle you fought for parking, you are going to go to class. You wait hopefully for the next bus. It’s full too.
Executive decision to sweat. You walk to class: sweating, panting, bleeding, crying.
10:02am You stumble into class, out of breath
After receiving a death glare from your teacher you say, “I’m sorry I’m late, parking was impossible today (and I didn’t want to come).”
This morning routine, which so many Clemson commuters endure in their own iteration, should be reason enough for Clemson Parking services to use the money that they gorge out of our pockets to build a parking garage, or at the very least reevaluate the current parking system.
148 DOLLARS A YEAR on top of an already hefty tuition bill should ensure reliable parking. How about Parking Services actually work to provide a service to the people parking rather than ruining people’s attendance, bank accounts, and happiness? I know it sounds crazy, but it’s what Clemson commuting students and faculty deserve.