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Commentary: It's a Parking Lot Out There

By Kevin Klenkel

Spectrum Staff Writer

 All week, I have  been racking my brain, trying to decide the topic of my first op-ed for my last semester.  The morning of Sept. 15 made it clear.  What the he@# is going on with parking on campus?

My first test of the semester was at 12:30 p.m. on Sept. 15.  I decided to come early to find parking.  I arrived on campus at 11:30 a.m., after circling each and every commuter parking lot, I finally made my way back to Lot J1.  Still with no parking available, I parallel parked on the side street leading up to the performing arts center.  I parked at 11:50 a.m. and returned to my car by 1 p.m.  To my surprise, I found a pink slip under my windshield wiper.

A ticket, for $35.  I was not alone.  I counted 14 tickets distributed on cars.  In less than an hour BSU made $490.  “No big deal,” I thought.  Upon further reflection, about a half-second later I realized, “This is bull@#$%!”   Provost Weldon Jackson announced that the freshman class enrollment is 953 --- the largest freshman class in the 151-year history of Bowie State University.  We’ve had a problem with parking since I began my enrollment in the spring of ‘14.  

Something has to be done with this problem.  I sincerely hope that these tickets are going to pay for expanding the parking lots.  As I drove around after class in my fury, I saw cars parked everywhere; every spot was taken with so many students and faculty (parking lot A had cars parked in non-designated spots) there is a problem.

If tickets were issued for not having a pass it would be one thing, but punishing overflow parking in a system that did not take into consideration the parking situation while it admits more and more commuter students is not just negligent; it is nefarious.