Two student parking lots provide a collective 225 parking spaces. People think this is enough parking space for everyone, but it isn’t.
Based on a survey of 67 respondents, 73.8 percent replied they are either driven by a student, drive other students or drive themselves alone.
Of those 67 replies, 78.5 percent agreed more parking space is needed for students. This shows a lack of student parking within both parking lots.
“No one except seniors should be allowed in the Senior Lot. We have seniority and should not be left scrambling to park because of underclassmen,” senior Arden Armstrong said about juniors parking in the Senior Lot.
Students obtain a parking pass at registration on a first come first serve basis. This doesn’t always work though. If a student does not make it to his or her first registration, then he or she misses the chance to get a pass and will have to be put on a waiting list.
What happens when a student doesn’t have a parking pass but still drives? He or she has to get to school early to find a spot on Selma or Lockwood Avenues, or isn’t reserved for teachers or locked in once the gates close.
“If the school doesn’t add parking spots, there should be more spots available for people who aren’t able to get parking passes because if you don’t get a parking pass in time, then you have to show up at a side street at like 7:05 a.m. just to get a spot on Lockwood or something,” one survey respondent said.
One solution to this problem of after school parking lot gridlock which was suggested by senior Oliver Chrisler is that the parking lots have more than one entrance/exit.
When students try to all rush out of the parking lot after school, the lots get crowded quickly. If the Senior Lot lets out on Selma Avenue and the Junior Lot lets out on Sylvester Avenue that would solve the problem of all the students leaving the parking lots onto one street.
Another solution for problematic parking traffic is that the city put up stop signs. There are no stop signs on Selma Avenue or on East Bradford Street, so drivers don’t have to stop. This creates a problem for those who parked in the student lot because without stop signs, drivers are left to wait until there is a gap in traffic or someone lets them out. If the city were to put up stop signs and create a four way stop, getting in and out of the parking lot would be much easier.
Though many students and parents have complained about the lack of parking, Webster Groves High School has enough student parking and should have less.
There is a problem, but they’re looking for the wrong solution, adding parking.
WGHS uses a permit system instead of anyone who gets there first because the students’ permit fees pay the school $11,250 per year.
Two students said that the price is too expensive, and financial aid should be available.
Juniors have to cosign for a parking pass. If seniors also had to cosign for parking space, fewer space would be needed.
Also, a system needs to be created for carpooling. Students who need a partner to rent a space with and students who need a ride can hail a ride through social media outlets such as Remind or GroupMe.
Students driving would be able to ask for gas money. Students who live in a certain perimeter around the high school should be last to get a parking pass. A certain perimeter would include homes in a walking distance that it doesn’t make sense to drive. This would have to be determined.
Fewer drivers after and before school creates a safer campus and less traffic, allowing for students who have jobs to get to their jobs after school quicker. Having fewer drivers also has environmental and monetary benefits. Fewer parking spots means that more people will be inclined to walk even if it’s just to their car farther away, and exercise is always good especially after a day of sitting.
Carpooling creates a social situation that people wouldn’t be in otherwise. Even after a long day of social activities sitting in a car listening to music is still sociable. After day and day sitting listen to the radio, carpoolers will start to feel comfortable, and then they’ll have a Facebook friend for life.
Students go to jobs and sports after school, and these complications would make it harder to create a system based on carpooling. A baseball or softball team has at least nine potential carpool mates, and football has more than 11 potential carpool mates.
People who have jobs can carpool someone home, then go to their jobs. There could be a chance to apply for one’s own parking space if need be, but few people need to be at their jobs immediately after school.
Student don’t need enforced rules to make this situation better. Students can voluntarily walk, bike or carpool.
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