Our View: Losing parking to ease traffic

DKS Editors

The process of adding roundabouts and crosswalks to the notoriously not-pedestrian-friendly Summit Street has been years in the making. Now that it’s finally getting closer to a reality that will aid safety and prevent congestion, a new problem might be emerging from the construction: a loss of parking.

Director of Parking Services Larry Emling told the Daily Kent Stater that the construction will cause the loss of a “couple hundred spaces” in the commuter parking lot by the Michael Schwartz Center.

“And that could unfortunately, realistically, be a permanent loss,” he said.

We think the university has demonstrated a lack of commitment to having suitable parking on campus. Ask any commuter — Kent State does not offer enough parking passes or spaces to accommodate the number of people who need to use them.

The parking lots that are available are often reserved for only certain types of passes, so the students who need lots adjacent to certain buildings might be out of luck if the closest lot has restricted availability. Even more inconvenient is making underclassmen travel to the football stadium to pick up their cars, which is hardly realistic for people who need to use them.

Kent State is one of the few major urban universities in Ohio that does not have any parking decks on campus, and it might be time to start thinking about adding one. It’s absurd to think that after losing parking to the Student Green and now a Summit Street revamp, there is no parking being added on campus to replace those losses.

We think the university could remedy this problem by adding a deck or additional flat lots on some of the new land it has purchased for other uses. For a school with as high a commuter population as Kent State has, it is inexcusable to not have enough places for them to park their cars.