Changes in parking lot frustrate RAHS students

The newly expanded parking lot remains empty and off-limits for RAHS students.  Photo by Cole Evans
The newly expanded parking lot remains empty and off-limits for RAHS students. Photo by Cole Evans

With construction on the Museum of Flight’s Aviation Pavilion coming to a close, more parking spaces have opened up for RAHS students. The parking increase is long anticipated and many students are eager to park closer to school.

Junior Melanie Warner expressed her disappointment with having to endure the walk from the Museum of Flight.

“I was pretty frustrated because during the summer I was really excited to park on campus and that I don’t have to cross the street everyday,” said Warner. “So now I still have to park across the street and it’s been pretty frustrating.”

RAHS junior Murphy Walker also expressed his unhappiness toward the downsized lot.

“In the beginning of the year it was awful, but now that the 747 has moved, you would think it would be better,” said Walker. “More spots have opened up and yet students still aren’t able to buy parking permits or park in the school lot because [the parking lot] is ‘too full.’”

Warner was looking forward to parking on campus, but soon discovered the lack of parking space.

“The downsizing is really frustrating. I was fine until it got to winter when I had to carry an umbrella and a heavy winter coat, because some mornings it would be pouring rain,” said Warner. “One morning I forgot my umbrella and I came into school completely soaked.”

Warner also explained the dangers and inconveniences of walking along East Marginal Way.

“It’s kind of unsafe at times. I carpool so most of the time I’m with someone when crossing, but there are random people who walk down East Marginal Way and being alone isn’t always a great feeling,” said Warner. “Not to mention how fast some of the people drive, I’ve seen so many car run the red light or look like they’re not going to stop.”

With parking being such a pressing issue at RAHS, students are baffled to see the newly expanded lot with empty spots that they are unable to park in.

“There are spots that are open on campus that no one parks at, and I don’t understand why we can’t park there,” said Warner. “Especially now that 747 has moved, I thought it would open up more spots. So I’m wondering if more spots will open up.”

RAHS Dean of Students Nuka Nurzhanov met with airpark planners, but still hasn’t received an answer to this conundrum.  
“We do not know yet how we are going to distribute the parking passes for additional parking spaces because we do know how many parking spaces we will get [from the museum]. Part of it should be for the museum visitors, too,” said Nurzhanov. “I met with [Bret Peterson] who is in charge of the construction zone, and he didn’t give me an exact number. We don’t have a clear understanding.”

With the student body voicing its concerns, and the addition of spaces behind the airpark, parking problems at RAHS are bound to get better. The question is, when the changes will take place.

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