Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Parking at UVA Law: The Third Rail? (Also, some confusion about which lots are where)

The other day we were browsing the Law Weekly archives in SL 279 . . . they go way back, all the way to 1948. Things come and go, and people are complaining about a variety of things: (in no particular order): race-relations, the Vietnam war, a professor's controversial remarks, the grading policy, the Korean war, a professor's controversial remarks, the Persian Gulf war and so on, but within this ebb & flow - one thing seems the same: everyone seems to complain about the student parking situation.

Here's the deal - there are a limited number - approximately 390 - spots available in the "D3" lot, which is near the law school, and has an overflow down by the park. This similar to last year (except we're not sure about the number), but there seems to have been one big change, according to the email that was sent out to students a few days ago:

It looks like that the lot by the Park (where the softball and soccer fields are) has become an all D3 lot. But previously this lot was split between "D3" (which cost $351.00 - yeesh!) and "Blue" passes (a paltry $144.00!). If this the case, it would be a big change, because the Blue passes would be relegated to parking by John Paul Jones arena, which is a 0.8 mile walk from the law school. At which point, we don't even know if it's worth it to try to buy a parking pass: better off taking your chances trying to find parking on Arlington Blvd. (if you're lucky - come early!) or on Milmont St. (which is still a shorter walk - only 0.4 miles!).

But is this really what's happening? A map from the parking and transportation department (pdf) indicates that half of the lot is still Blue, with the other half D3. If so, then the Blue pass - at less than half the cost of the D3 pass - may still be a good buy.

Anyway, whatever the situation is, we actually think it's good that passes are so expensive and hard to come by. People should be encouraged to

(1) Live close to the Law School and walk (it's better for the environment, is good exercise, and reduces our dependence on foreign oil)
(2) Ride a bike to school (") (granted this has caused a lot of controversy)*
(3) Carpool (all of the above, except for the exercise part). The parking office offers this option, at the same rate as an individual pass!

If you want to live far away from school, and drive there and not carpool, that's fine - but since no one is forcing to you, you should expect to pay something for that privilege given that there is now and always will be a paucity of spaces. The only alternative - building a garage like Darden has would be prohibitively expensive and likely require (cue ominous music) an increase in tuition!

*We also think that should be a pass for people who bike that allows them to drive one or two days a month in extreme weather situations, so you don't arrive to class soaked / covered with snow.


Anonymous said...

Whatever if you don't get a pass just park wherever and endure the ticket.

That is true ballin' status.

Rule 12 (f) said...

Yea, except they tow from those lots . . .

Anonymous said...

They started towing? Damn. I made it through two years of parking right behind scott commons any time I felt like going to class. $25 and $35 tickets were still a lot cheaper than a D2 pass.

Anonymous said...

First time commenter, alum from about 10 yrs ago. Love your idea of the inclement weather pass for bikers!

Anonymous said...

Is anyone else parking behind barracks or on Arlington blvd? I get to school around 8:15 and never have trouble finding a spot. Also, it's FREE.