OUR POINT THIS WEEK: Parking arrangements are dangerous for students as drivers and pedestrians.
New parking arrangements on Butler’s campus, made to accommodate the new freshmen class, are dangerous to both student drivers and pedestrians.
On Sunset Avenue, parking spaces on both sides of the street make it dangerous for passing cars. It is also dangerous for students living in Residential College because when pulling out, parked cars obstruct the driver’s view.
The newly installed pedestrian walkway between Ross Hall and Residential College aims to draw the attention of distracted drivers, but the location is still dangerous for pedestrians as many drivers are not paying attention to the cobblestone crossing.
While texting or talking on their cell phones, pedestrians do not pay attention to approaching cars.
It would be more effective to have a stop sign at the crosswalks around campus to protect both drivers and pedestrians from unwanted accidents.
Increased visibility should make a difference, but visibility is difficult because of an excess of street parking.
The problem is hard to solve because of the campus’ geographic location.
We have limited space in which to fit so many vehicles.
With the largest freshmen class in Butler history this year, parking has become even tighter.
The university is doing its best to adapt itself to the large freshmen class, but we feel it could adapt in a better way.
Simply painting the curb of the sidewalk white on Sunset Avenue does not safely integrate more parking spaces.
In the long run, if there is continued parking on both sides of Sunset Avenue, the road will need to be widened to accommodate more cars and pedestrians.
However, road construction on Sunset would pose a problem for nearby residents because there is not a way to widen the road without taking some of their property.
The problem also poses challenges because there is so little space for more parking when the university is in the midst of long-term growth. If the future freshmen classes continue to grow, permanent parking solutions will need to be implemented as opposed to tweaking street parking.
The university could make overflow parking at Hinkle Stadium available to students other than commuters.
This could potentially cut down on hazardous parking along busy streets such as Sunset Avenue and Hampton Drive, which are used by students daily.
This problem, although difficult to solve, needs to be looked into further by the university in order to find permanent solutions to increased parking.
The new parking available is more a short-term solution to a long-term problem due to its dangerous characteristics for drivers and pedestrians alike.
Another way to help prevent accidents between drivers and pedestrians, and drivers and other drivers, is to install several speed limit signs throughout campus. These speed limit signs would help cut down on reckless driving and keep pedestrians safe when crossing the street.
BUPD should also work to remind all students to remain alert when walking around campus or crossing the streets. Pedestrian awareness is key in preventing accidents on campus. A sincere effort by students and faculty members can help keep our campus accident free during this time of increased traffic.
While we applaud the university’s efforts to control parking this year, we insist upon improvements for the safety of all members of the Butler community.
The volume of cars in the future will only continue to grow, so the sooner more parking is available, and old parking is improved, the sooner the university can grow safely.
This semester’s new parking arrangements have eliminated a temporary problem but will not be effective in the long run. The university needs to continue to be aware of the increased population of students and the potential for future safety issues for students, staff and residents of the area. For now, we as a student body can do our best to be safe drivers and aware pedestrians.