WKU Parking and Transportation Services has released the 2016-2017 parking policy announcing a change to housing permits due to an anticipated shortage of parking spaces.
Jennifer Tougas, the director of PTS, said the number of housing permits will now be limited to the parking capacity on campus. In the past, an unlimited number of housing permits have been sold.
“This is new for housing permits, but we’ve been doing it for three years for commuter permits,” Tougas said.
The new parking policy will not affect the number of commuter permits sold for parking on WKU’s main campus. In a statement on the website for PTS, Tougas said PTS chose to decrease the number of housing permits instead of decreasing the number of commuter permits because commuter parking has been decreased in the past three years. Commuter parking will be expanded with the addition of a lot on Old Morgantown Road.
Students who are unable to purchase a housing permit on the main campus before the permits are sold out will have the option to buy a housing permit to park on South Campus. Transit services are provided to take students from South Campus to main campus. The White Line and Green Line currently make trips during weekdays to South Campus to pick up students. An additional White Line will be added on Sundays to compensate for the potential increase in students who park on South Campus.
In an effort to encourage students to leave their cars at home, PTS will offer a Car Free Program. Students who choose to participate in the program will receive discounts on transportation services provided by PTS such as GObg Transit passes, Greyhound bus discounts, airport shuttle discounts, Enterprise CarShare discounts and a tune-up for bicycles at the Outdoor Recreation Activity Center’s bike shop.
The parking policy changes come in response to campus construction. Parking during the 2016-2017 school year will be further limited by construction on two of the university’s parking lots: Adams Street lot and Creason lot.
A CVS Pharmacy will be built on Adams Street lot, and a new parking structure, Parking Structure 3, will be built on Creason lot. Tougas said she is hoping they will break ground for Parking Structure 3 this summer.
Bryan Russell, chief facilities officer, said the budget cuts will not affect the current or planned capital construction projects, so construction on Parking Structure 3 will not be impacted. When state budget cuts were still being debated in April, PTS expressed doubt about the fate of the parking structure.
Tougas said Parking Structure 3 will be paid for by student fees. The fees were approved last summer and are currently in place.
“They are part of the tuition bill [students] are already paying,” Tougas said. “These fees are paying for design and technical services now and will pay the debt on agency bonds, which will be sold this summer.”
These fees will cover the cost of the parking structure; however, PTS will pay for the construction of its office in the structure.
According to the Capital Project List, Parking Structure 3 will be a six-level structure. Tougas said it will add an additional 500 spaces for campus parking.
Despite these changes, permit fees will not be affected. Permits are currently for sale on the website for PTS.