Kent State Department of Architecture and Engineering will construct a new parking lot behind the Art Building this summer, director Tom Euclide said.
Euclide said plans for a parking lot behind the building were discussed for a long time, but it was not until last month that the idea was put into action.
“We talked about doing it for years, but Parking Services finally said ‘let’s do it’,” Euclide said. The lot will provide additional parking for art and business students and for events at the M.A.C. Center.
Lawrence Emling, assistant manager of Parking Services, said the lot will be primarily for faculty parking but will be open to anyone after 5 p.m.
“We’ve been short of space back there for years,” he said. “The demand for evening space is enormous, especially on that side of campus.”
David Camp, senior fine arts major, said he will commute to school next year and likes the idea of an additional parking lot.
“That would definitely be something I’d use,” he said. “You’re there all night as an art student. Most of the art students who I talk to are commuters anyway.”
Senior fine arts major James Young also said he is “totally for it.”
Not all students were as receptive to the idea.
Senior crafts major Jennifer Lucas said she is upset about the idea of removing the pine trees behind the building to create more room for parking spaces.
“I would rather see them put in a parking garage like they were talking about,” she said. “I would rather them do that then take up more and more grass and trees.”
Euclide said the university has also taken this into account.
“We’re as concerned about it as the students and the staff are,” he said, noting the university will plant additional trees to replace the ones that are cut down.
Emling added that many of the trees behind the building will probably not survive much longer.
“Part of what you have to look at is the condition of the trees,” he said. “Some of those trees aren’t in the best of shape. They might not live that long because of the work that’s already gone on down there.”
Junior fine arts major Brent Rogers said that he does not think the new lot will make much of a difference because it will fill up fast and will just put students farther from other buildings they might have to walk to.
“I’m kinda neutral on the issue,” he said. “It’s not really that great of a thing, because it’s a trade off. It might be closer to location A, but it’s farther from location B.”
Construction of the lot is scheduled to begin June 1 and should be finished by the time classes begin in the fall, Euclide said.
Contact building and grounds reporter William Schertz at [email protected]