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Minimal problems with parking as the school year kicks in

Credit: MELISSA NOVACASKA

Parking on campus doesn't seem to be as bad of an issue this year, though some lots, like lot eight, fill up quickly.


Melissa Novacaska | Interrobang | News | September 26th, 2016




Getting to campus and making it on time to class can be a challenge, add on trying to find a parking spot and that can create even more stress for students and staff alike.

This year however, parking has not been a major problem according to Marion Dietze, senior manager of Facilities, Operation and Sustainability.

Dietze said the first two weeks of school are always the busiest time for parking, but by the third week, there are more spots available for students and staff.

Parking consists of either winning the parking lottery and getting a pass, paying $4 per day with coins or paying $3 per hour.

There are also reserved lots for all those who have passes, though according to Dietze, it’s a first come first serve basis on who gets to park where while in the lots.

“Depending on what time they come in is what space is available, but we basically guarantee that they get a spot. If they don’t get a spot, then I want to know about it. So [students and staff] would let us know,” Dietze said.

Dietze said those who want to drive to school instead of taking public transportation must come early, since the spaces generally tend to fill up quickly.

According to Dietze, lot 8 by the K building tends to fill up by 9:30 a.m. or 10 a.m. Drivers will then be directed on the other side of campus to lot 5, though she understands this is not always convenient for drivers.

In terms of how the year is going so far, Dietze, who has been working in this department for a number of years now, said there hasn’t been many issues thus far and things have been pretty consistent

“I’m going to say that in many ways in that people who would come in and park in the coin lots or if they had concerns, they communicated with us,” Dietze said. “I want to say everybody communicated very well. In the communication stream you always have a few people that are upset and you try to do the best you can to explain for them, that we have an LTC bus to bring them to the college as opposed to their own personal cars.”

Dietze said that the school’s reserved lots are all sold out, though some people are still on waitlists to get a spot, which the facilities team is working to get them all one.

Finding a space to park shouldn’t be too big of an issue, Dietze said.

Attendants and patrols are frequently monitoring the lots.

With buzz that there were problems with attendants not allowing drivers to pull right in once a spot became available, Dietze said that might have to do with the fact that the attendants could possibly already have another car waiting to get in, and they are just not in view for the other drivers.

One thing Dietze said Fanshawe is trying to push in the next couple of weeks is the idea of loading one’s student card with a valued amount for parking, instead of using coins.

This would allow students to tap their cards and the $4 would be taken off the card, which is a big convenience for drivers.

Overall, Dietze said this year seems to be going well, considering there were a few hiccups last year.

“I think it’s been a very smooth situation this September. I’ve had a lot worse, and I think the busses are hugely being used and trying to keep the flow of students using the buses is a big thing,” Dietze said.

However, there are mixed feelings among students who drive to school.

Bethany Cowbrough, a recent transfer student, is not a fan of the parking system at Fanshawe.

“The parking system here is ridiculous, compared to the school I was at,” Cowbrough said.

“You would pay with your card, and so you could buy for a week or a day, and I live more or less out of town, so getting here by bus is just not doable,” she said.

Since Cowbrough was accepted late to Fanshawe, she was unable to get a parking pass and has been using the coin system for now.

Though Cowbrough said she does not tend to have any parking issues when it comes to 8 a.m. classes, she did spend roughly half an hour finding parking one day at 10 a.m.

“I probably give myself like two hours before my class to find parking just to make sure [I can get to class on time],” she said.

Joel Hiemstra, an architecture technology student does not seem to have had any issues with parking this year, thanks to winning the parking lottery and getting a parking pass.

“So far for this year it’s been pretty easy,” Hiemstra said. “And I’ve found a spot every single time but I came in pretty early at the very beginning of the year because I know it’s pretty full.”

Hiemstra said that usually by noon parking is less of an issue if anything, though for any classes beforehand, he will usually get in by 8 a.m. to ensure he does get a spot.

Hiemstra said this year’s parking seems pretty much the same as last year, but that this year his spot in the parking pass lot is more convenient for him.

He also said the parking is well organized and cheaper than what he has heard about other schools.

There are roughly 3,200 parking spots available at Fanshawe’s airport location. As of Sept. 19, there are over 15,000 students on the London campuses, including the downtown and airport locations.
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