Parking a ‘colorful’ adventure on campus

With the start of a new year and new students learning their way around campus, UVa-Wise students are also learning the hard way the rules of parking.

The campus police at UVa-Wise patrol the parking lots daily and ticket any cars that fail to meet the college’s parking rules and regulations. These tickets can end up costing students anywhere from $20 for parking in an incorrect lot according to their parking decal, to $250 for improperly parking in a handicap space.

“Some of the biggest [violations] we see are students not having a decal,” said Campus Police Officer Mark Harmon. “They either don’t know they need one or they just haven’t purchased it yet. That’s a big one. Parking in faculty reserved spaces with the red lines, that’s another common one. Freshmen parking on the lower campus, that sometimes is an issue, and we sometimes have problems with people parking in front of dumpsters or blocking traffic.”

Harmon also mentioned another common problem he sees: students parking in the lot by Crockett Hall, which is designated as visitors only.

“In the past, we’ve had some problems with students parking there and then just going to class,” Harmon said. “There are a couple of 20 minute spots there, where if a student wants to come in and grab lunch that’s fine, but the rest of those spaces are for visitors only, and we do see issues with that from time to time.”

Along with avoiding parking in faculty spots marked by red lines, students also need to be aware of which lots are available to them based on the color designation of their parking decal. During school hours — weekdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. — students with green parking decals are allowed to park in the gravel lot next to McCraray Hall, the Upper Campus/Commuter lot above the Sandridge Science Center, the softball lot, white spaces in the Greear Gym lot and the pool/tennis lot. Students with blue decals may only park in the gravel lots by McCraray and Culbertson Halls, the softball lot and the Martha Randolph Hall lot, while students with brown decals may only park in the Upper Campus/Commuter lot, the Carl Smith Stadium lot and the softball lot.

When asked if he had any advice for new students figuring out the parking on campus, Harmon offered several suggestions.

“Depending on where your classes are at, come early. McCraray gravel (parking lot) seems to fill up pretty quick during the morning times, but that’s a good place to park. Just try to get to your class early and give yourself enough time to not be in a hurry,” he said. “Definitely stay out of the parking lot up by Zehmer, I would avoid that. But like I said, if you have a friend who’s going to drop you off there, you’re more than welcome to pull in there and let them out and then you go park the vehicle in your designated parking area.”

Students can find more information on parking rules and regulations, as well as how to file an appeal on a ticket through the campus police website at uvawise.edu.

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