UAB Parking Report

By on August 25, 2014

Upon logging into Blazernet, students are greeted with this banner:

“Parking Map and Tips: Expect parking to be at near capacity during the first two weeks of the semester. Visit parking tips for details and information to help you prepare.”

It’s an immense struggle to find a parking spot anywhere during the first several weeks of school, especially anywhere close to the center of campus.

Instead of another article bemoaning the lack of UAB parking, this one gets the cold hard facts from UAB Parking and Transportation Director Andre’ Davis. The numbers are kind of shocking. Davis reports:

  1.  There are 6,300+ parking spots available for students and 6,600+ available for employees.
  2. There have been 4,300 student permits issued thus far.

Judging by the numbers, the 4,300 students who purchased parking permits should have over 2,000 excess parking spots to choose from, though some of these may be remote spots that require a bit of a walk or a ride on the Blazer Express.

Except, we all know plenty of peers who continue to park in permit lots with permits issued in 2011. You know, the ones who brag about how they can accrue 12 tickets over a year and still pay less than the suckers who shelled out the full $130 for a permit.

These people are the root of #UABparkingprobz. From the number of permits issued, UAB Parking can be fairly satisfied with the availability of parking.

But what are the numbers on enrollment? Surely this can give a better picture of the parking situation, despite the fact that not everyone enrolled has a car or will even use it to get to campus, opting for greener transportation such as carpooling, biking, or walking.

Numbers for Spring 2014 show that 16,997 students were enrolled. If the same number of students enroll for fall 2014, that means over 12,500 students would not have purchased a current parking permit. Even if half of those student walk, bike, or carpool, this leaves another 6,000 or so students parking on the street or in permit lots without permits.

The simple fact that parking spots will be near impossible to find this week demonstrates that if you do not pay for a permit, you should not park in the permit lots. If you want to park there, then buy a permit so UAB Parking can properly asess the demand for on-campus parking.

There is a silver lining for this fall semester of parking chaos. UAB Parking now has an official app, Parker, available for download in the App Store or Google Play.

At the time of writing, there are only ten lots available with online real-time parking availability. However, “All commuter student lots and faculty lots will be online the first day of class” Davis said.

The UAB Student Parking Tips page recommends saving time by parking in outlying lots with ample parking and either taking the shiny new Blazer Express or walking about ten minutes to campus. The page cites an average time of 35-45 minutes to find a spot in one of the decks at peak class time between 9AM and 2PM, with a comparison of 15 minutes of waiting for the Blazer Express from an outlying lot with ample parking available.

*Updated at 8:37 a.m.- currently 11 lots are online via Parker now, with only 3 with available parking: Lot 15l, lot 15D, and lot 15F. Good luck finding parking out there today, and Go Blazers!

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About Haley

Haley Townsend is a hypersomniac who enjoys problem-solving, brainstorming, walking her pointer-mix Sigmund, and majoring in English with a concentration in professional writing and a minor in business. She is a senior at UAB and Copy Editor for the Kaleidoscope. Her hobbies include reading, writing, belting Lady Gaga alone in her car, and watching too much HGTV.
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