Is the Eastern parking lot poorly designed?

Michael Sorensen

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Michael Sorensen

The parking lot quickly becomes backed up in the minutes after school lets out, and it’s often a chaotic scene.

   You may have arrived at class and heard something over the loudspeakers along the lines of “We are having traffic issues. Teachers, please proceed with normal attendance procedures. Anyone arriving after this time should be marked late. Thank you.” The frequency that this occurs poses a question regarding whether or not the problem is the traffic itself, or the parking lot that the traffic is entering. I think that the traffic is definitely a factor, but the parking lot plays a big role as well. 

   There are around 2,000 students attending this school every day, and if you drive to Eastern, there is no doubt that you are aware of the extreme congestion that you face on your way in and out of the parking lot.

   If you are in the furthermost area of the parking lot down by the tennis courts, you may find yourself waiting for the buses to leave and for most of the traffic to exit, because you know that there is no use in trying to squeeze your way out during that fifteen minutes of time. All of the traffic enters one way, and exits one way. I’m not exactly a parking lot designer, but I think that there could be ways to improve this situation. 

   Allowing people to purchase parking spots is not helping with the overall capacity of the parking lot. It’s very fun that students get to paint their own parking spots and add personality to the parking lot, and I don’t think that’s a bad idea. However, space is limited for cars to get in and out. 

   I’m not sure if the capacity of the parking lot itself is a problem though, since there are often plenty of empty spots, but I don’t think it would hurt to increase the size of the parking lot. 

Also, making students leave their cars one by one in the back of the school is definitely not a speedy process. I understand if this was put in place to streamline things, however it might make things faster to have people at least leave their cars in larger quantities. 

   It doesn’t help that the overall traffic entering the school is the combined traffic of both the front and the back of the school, all coming from the same direction. 

   All things considered, the parking lot could definitely be worse, but it could also be a lot better. I have seen parking lots with similar traffic that are handled better than ours. Hopefully as this grows into a bigger problem, it will be acknowledged and fixed in the future.