Parking panic at OU


Plenty of Oakland University students and faculty members have felt the pressure of somebody slowly and creepily following them throughout a parking lot, looking to swipe their parking spot the second they leave.

OU’s campus may be seeing even more parking lot lurkers in the upcoming school year, because according to associate vice president of facilities management, Terry Stollsteimer, about 900 spots are being taken up by construction projects that will last until fall, 2014.

The lots losing spaces are the lot adjacent to Vandenberg Hall, which is P-5, and two of the lots around Dodge and Elliot Halls; P-32 and P-36 to be exact. 

There is a remedy to the parking problem, because about 1,000 new temporary parking spots will be opening up by the time the fall semester begins.

The new temporary lots are located all around campus (see sidebar for exact locations,) but the largest temporary lot will be located in Upper Fields.

“Upper Fields is far… way too far to walk,” said recent OU graduate, Brandon Gautreau.

However, walking may not be necessary.

The Bear Bus will be shuttling students to and from the temporary parking lots, and two new buses have been purchased, giving the university a total of 6 buses. The bear buses can seat between 12-24 passengers, depending on the vehicle, according to Jim Zentmeyer, director of housing.

“Nobody should wait more than just a few minutes at each bus stop, that’s the goal,” said Captain Mark Gordon of OUPD.

Even with the new parking plan, some students are preparing for difficulties ahead.

“Personally, I don’t think I’m going to leave my spot. Ever,” said junior, Gary Essenmacher.

“There is definitely enough parking on campus,” said Gordon. “The problem is there isn’t enough convenient parking.”

According to Stollsteimer, there were 8,913 spots before the construction began.

Oakland University has about 20,000 students and faculty members.