With students back on campus this fall, some are encountering issues with parking.
Berry Situ, ‘23, said he brought his car to school this semester with the hopes of commuting to class more conveniently, however, his hopes have been dashed.
“It is very difficult to park on campus, and I can’t even find a proper parking space when I go to class,” Situ said. “Now, the biggest use of the car for me is to go shopping in the supermarket on weekends, and I still need to choose a more convenient way to walk on campus.”
Even though there are several parking lots on campus, most of the parking spaces belong to staff and faculty members, which leave students unable to find parking spaces near their academic buildings, Situ said.
Lehigh Parking Services told The Brown and White in an email they plan to create a car-free zone in the core of campus. This will limit parking in the center of campus to authorized vehicles only, such as Lehigh owned, leased and operated vehicles, as well as vendors who have been assigned work.
They said they hope this initiative will promote pedestrian and vehicular safety.
During the academic day, the Alumni, Farrington, Goodman, Zoellner and Mountaintop parking zones are reserved for faculty and staff.
After 4:00 p.m., students with residential and commuter permits that are granted evening and weekend privileges may park in those zones.
Situ said he doesn’t know many students who need to park on campus after 4:00 p.m. because their academic day is over by then.
Josie Krepps, ‘24, said she lives in Farrington Square and she doesn’t use her car to go to class, but she is still dealing with issues.
“The problem is that parking is always a problem when I get back to my dorm,” Krepps said. “Sometimes I even have to go to Warren Square or even further.”
Krepps said parking services should adopt a system in which students can buy or rent a fixed parking space each semester; this way, students won’t run into the issue of not being able to find a parking spot even if they have a campus parking permit.
Parking services said they don’t oversell a parking zone, therefore, each permit holder is guaranteed a parking space. They said students can refer to the parking zone map for specific parking zones and locations
“If a student can’t find a parking space in their assigned zone or lot, they should contact parking services,” Lehigh Parking services said. “We can dispatch a staff member to the parking zone / lot to determine if there are cars that do not have a permit for that parking zone / lot.”
Parking Services said they are working with various departments, including Lehigh Facilities and Sustainability, to improve their services.
As Lehigh experiences more growth, they said they hope to increase the number of carpool and commuter permit holders.
Parking services said they continuously evaluate their bus services to make sure they are providing reliable transportation to and from classes, meetings and events. They encourage faculty, staff and students to utilize the bus services more regularly.