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The Struggles of Parking at UMass

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Mass Amherst chapter.

Anyone living off campus here at UMass Amherst knows just how frustrating it is getting to class. If you are lucky enough to have a car, one would think this would be the answer to all those problems, right? Well, think again. Attempting to park on campus can leave you feeling a series of emotions that put a damper on a potentially great day.

It begins with the frustration of a parking pass. Commuters have the lucky option to buy a parking permit for $330 in a green lot which is more than likely nowhere near your classes. Despite the parking lot across from Isenberg which is convenient for students that are business majors, the green lots are inconvenient for anyone who has classes that are in the center of campus or near Morrill. The lots that are next to the majority of our class buildings and are most centrally located are the red lots, open to faculty and staff only. With this being said, walking across campus from your car to your class is not only time consuming, but is also an unintentional work out.

The walk only gets worse as the temperature decreases.

If you opt to not get the parking pass, there are always other options. For example the parking garage that is centrally located in the middle of campus. However, we are all college students. Managing the little money we have is hard enough as it is without setting aside money for a car to sit in a garage at a rate of $1.50 per hour.

The third option is meter parking. The first struggle of meter parking is the dreaded parallel parking, because who really remembers how to do that after passing the driving test?

The second struggle with meter parking is the risk of not finding a spot. Sitting outside of the building you need to be in with only 5 minutes to get to class is infuriating when the lack of a parking spot is what is preventing you from being on time.

Not to mention that most meters only allow you to park for a maximum of 2 hours. If you are studying somewhere on campus, who wants to run back to a meter to put in more quarters every 2 hours? My guess is that this option is desirable to very few people.

Then of course, there are always the buses. However, we all know that trying to squeeze on a bus during the most popular class times is pretty equivalent to a can of sardines

Now I know this world is not perfect, but it would be nice to be able to drive to Morrill and park within about 20 feet from the building. It would be much more convenient to make it to a UHS appointment on time if there was a parking lot to park in, instead of circling until there is a meter open. Sometimes you just really crave stir fry from Berk or an omelette from Hamp, and the trip would be so much more enjoyable without worrying if a spot in the horseshoe will be open. As we all know we cannot get everything we wish for, but a girl can dream, right?

Photo Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Sources: 1

Contributors from the University of Massachusetts Amherst