Parking lot changes help improve flow and safety


Francis McManus

The gravel lot exit onto Meadowbrook Way now features two distinct turn lanes. Prior to the start of the school year, the entrance to the gravel lot was in this location.

Fleur Uittenbogaard, Staff Reporter

In an effort to relieve the congestion that plagues the student parking lot, the entrance and exit have been flipped, and new right-hand and left-hand turn lanes have been added.

According to Principal John Belcher, these changes have come from the district’s transportation department in order to “reduce conflict with buses trying to enter and students all leaving at the same time,” as well as to “increase flow and [lessen] interruptions since the buses are on tight schedule.”

Prior to the changes, the exit was very close to the bus lane, leading to congestion–especially after school when buses would attempt to enter the lot after picking up the students at the FC.

“It’s better for the bus drivers as they are trying to cross the street, as students are trying to leave very fast,”student security officer Mandy Shinn said. “I would like to see students slow down.”

Students seem to be mostly supportive of the changes.

“It does make more logical sense now… there’s no more crossing over [lanes],” said senior Bella Gerlitz, who drives a Jeep Wrangler. “Still, it’s always so crowded… I feel like I’m gonna get in an accident every day,” and that the situation is overall “better, but still bad.”

Other students agreed that the changes have helped, but haven’t completely solved the problems in the gravel lot.

“I like the turning lanes, but I’ve definitely got confused about the change of where the entrance and exit are placed. Though I do like it, I think it makes it easier to leave,” said senior Peyton Lane, who drives a Hyundai Accent. Largely echoing the earlier concerns, she also said that “the parking spots are a little small, so when big cars park on each side of me, even though my car is small, it is still hard to get into.”