Any student on campus with a car knows the struggle of parking on a big game day. There are a number of situations which may cause a student to find themselves being prohibited from parking in the lot for which they paid money. Lots that aren’t reserved on game days fill up quickly with exiled cars, and now suddenly students with passes for these lots have no room to park. Maybe a student does find a spot in an unrestricted lot and then forgets about it until Monday afternoon, and now they have a ticket.
Now I understand that this isn’t a major concern. This isn’t going to ruin anyone’s time here at TU. However, it affects a lot of students negatively, and I think that should concern the TU administration.
It always seemed odd to me that a university of TU’s caliber would, at any time, not let students park in lots they paid for. Whenever I have a potential student, or parent, ask me if i would recommend TU for themselves or their child, little things like the hassle of parking on game days instantly fill my mind. I think to myself, “Yes, TU has amazing academics, wonderful professors and a beautiful campus, but I’m sure this kid could get into a similarly amazing school that also lets them park in a lot they pay to park in whenever they want.”
I know that TU wants non-students to come to games and wants them to have the best experience possible while there. I also want this. But there has to be a better way to accommodate both visiting fans and students.
A few years ago, in an Improve TU article, the idea of letting people park in the TU-owned field across Harvard was posited. It’s not too far of a walk from these fields to the Reynold’s center, or if the administration was more comfortable making students park there, at least we wouldn’t have to worry about getting ticketed.
Maybe we leave half of each lot still open for students to come and go as they please, that way students wouldn’t feel trapped on campus during game days and visitors still had parking spots.
Another idea, crazy as it might sound, could be to try just not restricting student parking at all, just to see if it really would be such a parking nightmare for visitors that they stopped coming to games.
Making game day parking less of a struggle for students is a relatively easy and important way to improve the University of Tulsa.