You mosey at a snail’s pace on Route 76 and weave through people and cars down Broad Street, arriving with only minutes to spare before class begins, but you can’t find a parking spot. After furiously meandering throughout the campus streets, you finally find one and exhale.
All seems to be well, until later that day when you return to your car and find a glaring white envelope with menacing blue letters spelling the word “violation.”
If this sounds oddly familiar to your parking experiences at Temple, you are not alone.
Many students commute to campus and may find the trek and lack of available parking spaces frustrating.
“Sometimes I just want to park my car in the middle of Broad Street and just hope for the best,” said junior journalism major Ariana Smith, who commutes to campus from Mt. Airy.
teria while attempting to find parking by paying to park in a campus lot, however prices have increased from $9 to $10 a day since last year. Also, available space will decline spring semester due to the addition of Tyler School of Art.
Drivers will be losing lots 4 and 6 (located directly across the street from Annenberg Hall at Diamond Street, between 12th and 13th streets).
In response to the parking shortage on and around campus and an increase in parking prices, some students are using the $5 lot on Cecil B. Moore Avenue between 10th and 11th Streets.
Some have even found unsanctioned alternatives to on-campus parking, such as the “dirt lot.”
To those who have never experienced it, beware. It’s kind of like the Bermuda Triangle of cars: Once you’re in, you may never get out.
James Cirillo, director of Parking Services, said Temple now offers a $5 rate at lot 10, located next to lots 4 and 6.
“We understand the loss of those lots will be inconvenient to students, so we want to provide for them another safe, convenient lot at a lower price,” Cirillo said. “If students don’t want to use cash to park, they are able to use their Diamond Dollars in the lots.”
For some students paying to park, no matter how inexpensive, is simply not an option
for a daily commute.
Senior Matt Steiner, an advertising and marketing major, used to drive from his home in South Philadelphia, but gave up after two weeks and opted to take his bike instead.
“I can’t afford to pay for parking in addition to books and all my other college expenses. A lot of these pay lots are way too far from where my classes are and I feel like I’m wasting time and money getting to school,” Steiner said.
Despite the toil of trying to find parking,
perhaps the biggest concern raised by students is the distribution of violation tickets, which may be distributed by both Campus Police and Philadelphia Police, ranging anywhere from $25 to $300 depending on the violation.
Parking violations may be disputed in Traffic Court, located at 8th and Filbert streets. Unfortunately, the court sets the date and time of the hearing, which may force students to miss classes.
“You have the right to fight any ticket. Temple’s parking laws are the same as the rest of Philadelphia, and if you believe you didn’t deserve a ticket, you can take it before a judge,” Campus Police Officer I. Martinez said. “Just make sure to keep your eye out for signs. Make sure you’re within 15 feet of ‘No Park’ zones and fire hydrants too.”
To avoid the stress of finding a street spot on campus or the hassle of a ticket, students are straying from driving and turning to other options, be it biking, trains, buses or simply walking the distance.
Senior Elena Gonzales still drives to campus despite the lack of adequate street parking, “I typically park on 13th and Diamond [streets]. It’s a bit of a hike to my class, and sometimes I’ll find myself late, but I have to get to school somehow, even if I have to park a little further away than I’d like to.”
Aly Semigran can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.