By Kyran Crist / Online Editor­­­

Whether you are a returning Hutchinson Community College student or brand new to campus this semester, you more than likely have experienced, or at least heard about, parking problems on campus.

If you’ve only heard about them, consider yourself lucky, and maybe go buy a lottery ticket.

Unless you hit that very sweet spot that lasts about two minutes after classes get out, or arrive at 8 a.m., finding a decent and close parking spot to your first class is close to impossible.

“Weather permitting, I will drive my bike, because there is always a guaranteed spot in the best parking on campus,” sophomore Bailey Nachtigal said. “But when I do drive my car, I tend to arrive 15 minutes early, because I often park in the small Plum­­ (Street) parking lot, because I don’t want to risk not finding a spot in the Lockman parking lot.”

Freshman Gabriel Crist arrives a bit early for his first class and opts to park further away and walk a bit.

“I usually arrive 10 minutes before class starts to park outside of Stringer (Fine Arts Center) and walk to Shears (Technology Building)” he said. “I don’t mind walking too much, it means I can catch Pokémon, and also have more space in that parking lot. My car is less likely to take a beating and is much easier to get in and out of.”

Sophomore Cole Anderson prefers to arrive even earlier for his first class to ensure a prime parking stall.

“I will leave like 20 minutes early just to make sure I can get a spot,” Anderson said. “Depending on the time of day, I’ll park in the Plum parking lot or the Student Union lot. I always find a space off Plum, but never in the Union.”

Parking has improved with the construction at Parker Student Union complete, but that doesn’t mean it’s easier to find a spot.

Some students would rather arrive 10-15 minutes earlier to find a farther parking lot and walk than go through the chaos of looking for a spot in the main lot.

Provided below is a chart and campus map to help students and people accessing the campus parking to avoid chaotic parking and help students better access their parking. The steps are from various lots to the closest door to Lockman Hall.

Lot –LockmanBetween 11th and 12thPlumArenaStringer Fine ArtsAcross from Cosmosphere
Steps –85210230400420450
Fills up –9 am9 am8 am8 am
Clears out-12:3011:2012:3010:10

The lots one would have the most luck find a spot are the Sports Arena and Cosmosphere parking (although that is currently under use for COVID-19 testing only), farther walk, but they are the most likely to offer a spot. Though if closer parking is wanted, it is advised to show up at least 10 minutes early or right before the previous class is being let out in hopes someone will be leaving and vacating their spot.

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