Transportation Day looks to inform students on parking to avoid citations

Transportation Day looks to inform students on parking to avoid citations

Transportation Day looks to inform students on parking to avoid citations
July 11
20:48 2017

The UNT transportation services is organizing a new event to inform first time students about parking regulations and resources. The event, named Transportation Day, will take place from 5-7 pm on August 27 outside of Victory Hall.

Christopher L. Phelps, the UNT transit operations director, said they want to inform students, but do it in an entertaining way.

“[Parking] can be frustrating and we want to help manage that frustration. That’s one of the big keys to why we’re doing this,” Phelps said. “[We want] to have fun but also get the education out there so that they can make informed choices about where to park.”

Students will learn about the appropriate places to park, transportation options and transportation resources. Several organizations will have tables set up to provide this information.

Representatives from DCTA, Parkmobile, Zipcar, the DART rail system, Fort Worth Transit Authority and the UNT Police Department are expected to show up. The city bike coordinator is expected to be there as well.

“[We are] trying to take a more customer service approach, trying to listen to the students, faculty, and staff and get our information out there,” Erica Breeding, event manager, said. “We are communicating better with people to let them know what services we have available and what options are out there.”

Even though the event is educational, Breeding is hoping for a carnival atmosphere. There will be free barbecue, yard games, a big wheel race, a 1916 Volkswagen photo booth and a dunk tank where students can dunk Geary Robinson, the director of parking.

“You’ll have fun,” Phelps said. “Hopefully you will learn a little something and have some fun while you’re doing it.”

Phelps said parking is a challenge because it changes daily. UNT lost 1200 parking spots last year and lots keep getting farther out.

Phelps, quoting Geary Robinson, the director of parking, said UNT transportation is the “curator” of buildings.

“We make nice, flat spaces that people love to build on and therefore we have to build farther and farther out,” Phelps said.

Phelps said UNT has enough parking, but it’s not where people want to park. Students have an expectation of parking anywhere and going to class, but that’s not practical or realistic, according to Phelps.

Phelps said the goal of the event is to provide information on the front end instead of the back end, which would be a citation.

“The worst thing you can have is people not knowing where to park so they come to campus and get a citation or they get extremely frustrated because they don’t know [the regulations],” Phelps said. “This is an effort to get ahead of that.”

Randi Mavroulis, a family studies senior, doesn’t have a parking pass, and parks in the neighborhoods around UNT. Mavroulis said Transportation Day could prepare new students, but their still going to be frustrated with the parking.

“People are still going to be mad because they are paying 200 or something dollars for this sticker to go on their windshield and they still can’t park in any of the zones,” Mavroulis said. “I can see it, maybe, easing some of the frustration just because they were told ahead of time.”

Transportation services will also have a welcome back event from 9 am to 2 pm on August 29 at the Union third floor. This is designed to catch anybody that wasn’t at Transportation Day.

“Parking is not a perfect situation but we have to make due with what we have,” Phelps said. “I think those folks that learn about the resources we have available will be better able to get to class, [and] do the things they need to do when they need to do them with less hassle and less stress.”

Featured Image: Representatives from DCTA, Parkmobile, Zipcar, the DART rail system, Fort Worth Transit Authority and the UNT Police Department are going to inform first time students about parking regulations and resources. File

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Devin Rardin

Devin Rardin

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