Alma Mater — Not enough Parking Spaces


Alma Mater — Not enough Parking Spaces

I graduated from UCLA, its also home to parking guru Don Shoup. However according to a story snagged by Astrid at, over 1000 students have been placed on a waiting list, some of them seniors. Seems that there are so many staff and faculty (priority) and so many events, and other activities on campus, that there isn’t enough room for the students.

There are over 45,000 students at UCLA — a tad over 30,000 staff and faculty. That’s a staff member for every 1.5 students.  Wow!  Just what has happened at my school. Are there so many staff that there isn’t room for the students?  It would seem to be true.

Students are put at the end of the list for parking, with janitors, cooks, and gardeners higher on the list. Naturally faculty are higher, too. And administrators.

Has the home of the UCLA Bruins considered a parking system that charges based on usage, and not simply awarding a space and giving the owner a license to hunt?

A university in Australia has set up a system whereby students pay (by cell) only when they are on campus. This motivates them to drive only when necessary and to move their vehicles as soon as practical. The end result was finding that there were plenty of spaces, and every student, teacher, and staff member had a place to park, when they needed it.

Oh, and the income actually went up.

The UCLA parking department told one of the students on the waiting list that a computer ‘algorithm’ was in error, and a number of lower division students (first and second year) were given spaces ahead of Seniors. I thought UCLA was one of the places that invented the internet, and they can’t figure out how to pass out parking passes.

I hope that someone is embarrassed. I wonder if someone at one of the world’s great universities is rethinking the staff/student ratio. Doesn’t make a lot of sense to me, but what do I know, I’m just a lowly graduate.


Picture of John Van Horn

John Van Horn

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