Categorized | Features

The New Parking Lot

By: Shauna Wilson

I do not drive, but I have friends who do. I was sitting at lunch one day and we got to talking about student parking and how important it is to all the students. I got to thinking about recent changes to student parking at WHS. We now have a “new” student parking lot and yet some students still park in the back. Being the great journalist that I am, I went to go ask Mr. Stamm some questions.

Our conversation started when I asked how a student can get a parking pass. Mr. Stamm told me that “they are sold out, but that’s just because we are limited, and that will increase. We spent a lot of time in the summer trying to sort out how we can make everybody fit. From last year we are down about 18-20 spots, and a lot of that has to do with we are missing a few spots in the front where they did the new construction. We are missing 4 spots in the front, but we will get them back.”

He continued by explaing how “the prep area and loading down area, on the far side of the school is eventually going to be a parking area. But we will gain more spots, so right now this is not the total amount of spots. We will be getting more.”

For the time being, the parking spots are only $10, unlike some other schools. “Some schools are charging $50, we have never seen a reason to increase the amount. Maybe down the road but it’s not been on my agenda,” added Mr. Stamm.

I was a bit shocked at how much it cost to get a parking pass. I knew the parking spots would be gone soon, and that there would be a minimal amount.

I wondered why we had a small amount of parking given the number of student drivers at Wayesboro. How was the number of parking spots decided, I wondered.

“So that turns into a joint conversation with the architects, the city and the school, so it’s not about how many spots” Mr. Stamm explained.

“We obviously want to increase the number of spots at the end of the day. There are regulations, the amount of space, how much concrete we need and just what kind of space we have at the school. In an ideal world, we would have a big parking lot somewhere. We’d have more spaces than what we need but with the regulations, what the requirements for the city are, the requirements the architects have to follow, we try to get as many as we can.” So it seemed that the only reason we have a certain amount of parking spots isn’t because of some dumb rule. We just have to follow the regulations.

Did we really need a new student parking lot though given that students are still parking in the back?

“It’s so nice and a big reason for it being out front wasn’t so much that the students get the new parking. However, I thought about how it would work with our renovation and our new entrance. There are more seniors driving than there are spots out front, so what we did was offer the seniors to get the parking passes two days ahead of everyone else. So they had the chance to get a spot first, and we had some pick them out back. We have students that go to Valley VoTech and GOV school in the morning, there’s a lot of those students that get the parking spots in the front. We want them to be close to the front entrance. The other thing is it separates the students and the busses that are there in the afternoon” replied Mr. Stamm.

We all know that the parking lot is nice and all, but does everyone like it? There must be some positive and negative challenges with the new parking lot.

“The positive is that it’s a new and fresh look. We don’t’ have any big puddles out there when it rains. The landscape of the front looks so much nicer, it makes our school look new. It’s more accessible for people, and especially for our visitors. We have to keep working with our pickup and dropoff, but the students and parents are doing a good job. It’s interesting watching, the cars do not move up when they drop a student off or pick up a student. There is also less of a back up at the light.” Said Mr. Stamm.

Hopefully, in a few months or so, people will learn not to park in others’ parking spots, because you could lose your parking pass and or your car could get towed. Overall, I believe our new student parking lot is doing good and it looks amazing.

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