Parking Problems:


President Brian Casey was walking with two students on Locust Street when he noticed a white paper flapping under the windshield wiper of his car on Thursday, Sept. 6. He had received a parking ticket.
Casey, who called the ticket a "teaching moment" in a tweet, is not the only one who has been cited for a parking violation this semester. Over the last several weeks, other car owners have begun to notice tickets on their own vehicles.
The Anderson Street construction has had a "rippling effect" on campus parking, according to Angie Nally, director of Public Safety. The construction has created some confusion with individuals regarding where they can leave their cars.
"We didn't lose any parking spaces," she said. "We just changed who's supposed to be parking where."
Nally noted several changes made in parking designations starting this semester. The Hanna Street lot and Anderson Street are now designated as parking for faculty, staff and visitors from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m Monday through Friday. The lot behind Rector Village was also expanded to create additional parking for those students with upper classmen parking permits.
In anticipation of confusion with these changes, Nally said a part-time position was created to help with enforcing parking rules. In the first several days of the semester, Public Safety focused on issuing warnings to those incorrectly parked in the new designated areas. After that first week, any vehicle found violating the parking rules has received a ticket.
"It seems to me that people are having a hard time getting used to it - including myself," Casey said.
Nally acknowledges there's a "learning curve" that comes with the parking changes. She said the goal is to not write any citations.
"I think that's the thing students are like, 'They're just trying to write us tickets.' And that's not true," Nally said. "It's about getting people registered so that we know who's supposed to be where."
According to Nally, most of the students who received tickets for invalid permits had their tickets voided when they registered for permits. As more students have registered their vehicles, Nally said she's seen a "dramatic decrease in the amount of tickets."
While sophomore Hunter Dyar keeps his car at Sigma Nu to avoid parking in the wrong area, his ticket reminded him of the importance of registering his vehicle.
"I got my ticket after about two weeks of school," Dyar said. "I didn't have a parking permit. The ticket was $25 for an expired permit violation because I only had my sticker from last school year on my car. I paid off the ticket, got a new permit and went on with my day."
According to the Public Safety website, a number of violations have a $25 fine. These include not having a valid permit or an improperly displayed permit, parking in a yellow curb or hashed area violation, parking in a restricted area or an improper parking violation. Individuals who fraudulently use a ticket or park in a handicapped spot will receive a $50 fine.
"It's not about making money," Nally said. "The goal is to go out and check parking and not write any tickets."
Nally explained that Public Safety is "adamantly against" taking money and does not earn a profit from parking permits and tickets. As a result, these transactions are either paid through cash receipts or added to student bills. Any money collected then goes to the university's general fund. Brad Kelsheimer, vice president of Finance and Administration, was unable to be contact by deadline to address the specific details.
But for the students who do have permits, there still seems to be a shortage of parking spots.
Even though senior Trent Kirkwood has had a car on campus the past six semesters, he's had difficulty finding where to park his car this fall. Kirkwood lives at 427 Anderson St. with six other students, four of who also have cars. Initially, the students left their vehicles in the St. Andrew's Episcopal Church parking lot behind their house.
That is until they received paper notices on their cars that read, "Your sins are forgiven but your car will be towed, at owner's expense."
Kirkwood and his housemates, unsure of where to park, currently keep their cars on the grass yard behind their house.
"[The university] definitely hasn't reached out to us at all," Kirkwood said. "We were sort of blind going into it, where to park. I don't really think any of us thought about it and so we just thought 'Oh there's a church parking lot there, we'll just park in it.'"
Kirkwood anticipates his housemates and other Anderson Street residents will have no issues with parking once the construction is done.
"I think I have a good grasp [on where to park on campus] overall, but with the construction ... it complicates it," he said.
While parking can sometimes present challenges for students, Nally considers DePauw to be a "pedestrian campus." According to Nally, a majority of the student population does not use cars daily. But when they do want to use cars, their complaints sometimes surface about the lack of parking.
"There are a sufficient number of parking spaces," Nally said. "The general concern is with the proximity of the spaces to where people want to park." Nally noted that there are over 400 parking spots in the Blackstock lot.
For junior Dakota Dalton, parking close to desired buildings has become especially important since he sprained his ankle several weeks ago. While Dalton obtained a special parking permit from Public Safety, the permit hasn't necessarily solved his problems.
"It's very difficult for me to walk anything more than a moderate distance without being in pain," Dalton said. "But there are never any open parking spaces within a block or two of my building, so I end up having to walk a mile anyway."
Junior Jordan Davis has also been bothered by the current parking situation on campus.
"Not having Anderson Street parking and the prior convenience of the Hub circle has made it a hassle for the overall traffic of pedestrians and student drivers," Davis said. "It's frustrating to have to drive past the Hub and all the way down to Seminary Street to turn around just to park in front of the Union Building."