The student news site of Air Academy High School

The Jetstream Journal

A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

Jonathan Flat, Managing Editor

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






On my first day of senior year, I woke up, as usual, at 6:50 a.m. At 7:20 a.m., I got in my car and started to drive to school. For the past two years, 25 minutes was plenty of time to get to school and be in class five minutes before the 7:45 a.m. start time. However, this year I was met with a surprising obstacle: a line of at least 30 cars stopped on the bridge, waiting to turn left. While this put a dent in my time schedule, I was still on track to make it to school on time… until I rounded the curve to see yet another line of stopped cars waiting to turn onto Carlton Drive. This line was even larger than the last. I was late.

Highlighted in Dylan Featherston’s article, “Parking Lot Perils,” Air Academy’s parking lot traffic is an unwanted burden for students, parents, teachers, and base residents on their daily drives. Driven by the frustration of the driving student body, three seniors (Carter Rodny, Max Raber, and Jonathan Flat (me)) in Honors Engineering Design and Development sought to define the problem and develop solutions for the parking lot crisis.

Following is a brief overview of our project.

Current Problems

#1 – In the morning, traffic is caused by parents leaving the drop off lane and turning right, preventing a left turn into student lot.
#2 – Because students must stop to wait for an open slot to turn left into the lot, traffic backs up to the intersection, preventing cars on Pine Drive from turning left as well.

  • During the period of 7:36 a.m. to 7:38 a.m. on a blue day morning, 35 parents left the drop off. That’s more than one parent every 2 seconds, making it extremely difficult for students to turn left into the student lot.
  • Not only does the traffic cause problems for students and parents, but it also is problematic for all people on base because of the blocked-up road.
  • Rear-end collisions have occurred because of the major traffic causing cars to suddenly stop; this problem will likely be exacerbated by winter conditions that are yet to come.
  • “Mr. Gorr Problem” (because Mr. Gorr proposed the problem): Faculty that park in drop-off loop want to be able to leave quickly after school.
  • After school, some parents like to illegally park in the road just south of the drop-off entrance. This causes a dangerous situation for buses and faculty leaving school since they must drive into the oncoming lane in order to leave.

Proposals

Proposal 1

  • Reverse the direction of traffic flow within the student parking lot. The current entrance will become the exit, and the current exit will become the entrance.
  • What needs to be done:
    • Reversing the direction of the current parking spaces, angling them so cars may drive in a counterclockwise direction.
    • Education of parents and students (email sent out, new signs, volunteers to direct traffic during adjustment period).
  • Pros:
    • By switching the entrance and exit, students no longer have to wait for an opening between parent vehicles.
    • The solution is fairly easy, cheap, and realistic.
  • Cons:
    • There is somewhat of a bottleneck when parents and students must merge; however, a speed bump at that point will most likely ensure that students and parents are driving slow enough to perform a safe merge.

Proposal 2

  • Reverse the direction of traffic flow within the student parking lot. Move parent drop off/pickup behind school, along the edge of bus parking lot. Use current service road as connector and exit between parent drop off/pickup and student lot.
  • What needs to be done:
    • Same steps to reverse direction as previous proposal.
    • Paint line along edge of bus lot to separate parents and buses.
    • Educate bus drivers, parents, and students.
  • Pros:
    • Parents will no longer block students from turning into the parking lot.
    • The merge will be accomplished easier, eliminating the bottleneck from proposal 1.
    • Eliminates parents parking in the road in the afternoon. There is plenty of space in the bus parking lot for backup and even room for extra.
  • Cons:
    • More complex and in-depth.
    • Parents will have to drive around the entire school and may not even abide by the new design.
    • May be difficult for buses to navigate around parents.
    • May need to widen the entrance/exit of the bus parking lot.
    • Parents must stop a bit before the service road, or they will block all pick-up traffic as they wait for their child.

Considering the proposals, my group decided that the most simple solution is the most applicable. With proposal 1, little needs to be done to reverse a large amount of parking lot traffic. It is also likely that the simpler proposal 1 is most likely to be accepted by administration and base officials. Having proposed the solutions to Mr. Olsen, who received the proposal enthusiastically, we await information from other parties who must approve the redesign of the parking lot. The redesign is not likely to happen soon—or perhaps never at all. Yet, we can dream of a traffic-free parking lot, a hassle-free drive, and an accident-free future.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Comment

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




*

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Christmas Traditions

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Bullying- It Does More than You Think

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Christmas: So Commercialized

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    The 5 Best Places to Travel During the Holidays

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Have Yourself a Stressful Little Christmas

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Gift Guide on a Budget

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Homework: Horrific or Helpful?

  • Feature

    Trying to Escape the Vape?

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Scared of Skin Care?

  • A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis

    Feature

    Is Family Dead?

The student news site of Air Academy High School
A Solution to the Parking Lot Crisis