The University Record, September 24, 1997

Crack in Hill street structure creates parking crunch

Parking availability on Central Campus is tighter than usual this fall. A large crack on the top level of the Hill Street parking structure is one of several problems Parking Services staff is addressing to ease the strain. Photo by Rebecca A. Doyle

By Rebecca A. Doyle

Faculty and staff accustomed to parking their vehicles in the Hill Street parking structure may want to find an alternative space or even an alternative to driving to Central Campus.

A large crack on the top level of the structure was first reported in August by Parking Maintenance worker Russ Wagner, and after inspection the entire top level was closed to parking. Steel beams have been placed on each floor of the structure so it can be used, but the beams gobble up about 50 parking spaces. Construction of Wyly Hall at one end of the structure has an additional 45 spaces blocked to prevent damage to faculty and staff vehicles. The Hill Street parking structure, which normally is used to capacity during the work week, holds 450 vehicles.

"Losing more than 100 spaces to construction and repair pushes an already crowded parking situation into an even worse one," says Diane DelaTorre, administrative associate at Parking Services. "It is a difficult situation and one for which we will try to provide solutions as quickly as possible, but construction at Wyly Hall is a two-year project."

DelaTorre notes that additional faculty and staff parking (blue sticker) will be provided in a surface lot at the corner of Hill and State streets, but because of delays in construction complicated by a water main break, the lot will likely not be completed until next summer. When completed, the new lot will accommodate approximately 50 cars.

Parking Services suggests the following alternatives to the Hill Street structure:

"It is truly an unfortunate set of circumstances that have occurred to reduce the available parking space," DelaTorre says, "and staff at Parking Services are aware that Central Campus, and particularly the southeast area of Central Campus, is severely affected by this loss.

"However, we could not keep the Hill Street structure fully open with the problems that have developed."

Parking Services updates and prints a map each year that can be used to determine which lots require permits and how close they are to your office or work site. The maps will be available next week at Parking Services, 508 Thompson St.