How to park without meeting the boys in blue
It is no secret that SMU has one of the best campuses in the country, and a large part of it has to do with the lack of vehicle congestion. SMU has done an amazing job at keeping congestion limited, but it has come at a price: limited parking for students.
Limiting the amount of parking spaces on campus has made it a challenge to find a place to park without getting in trouble. However, there are still ways for students to legally park on campus.
The easiest way for students to secure a parking spot is to schedule early classes. If you have a class before 11 a.m., you are pretty much guaranteed to find somewhere to park.
If the class you are taking is after that time, things become tricky because most of the spots are already taken. The best thing to do in this case is arrive early.
For example, if you have a 2:00 p.m. class, the last thing you want to do is arrive at a parking garage at 1:50 p.m. because everybody with a 2:00 p.m. class will be there. Arrive no later than 1:40 p.m. so you can grab a spot from those students who get out of their 1:00 p.m. classes early.
If you arrive early and still cannot find a spot, grab some quarters and pay at a meter.
Most people know about the meters by Boaz and Hyer Hall, but there are also meters behind the Sigma Chi fraternity house and by the Perkins Administration Building.
I must warn you, if you have any thoughts of your meter running out, pay extra. If your meter runs out, it is almost guaranteed that those people in the blue-collared shirts driving golf carts will give you a ticket (and your citation fee probably goes towards those golf carts).
The next thing to study is the hours of the faculty lots. Many lots open up to students at 5:00 p.m., specifically those by Umphrey Lee and behind Dallas Hall. You have free reign in those lots until 7:00 the next morning.
The last legal resort is to find a two-hour parking space, and you can find those on Hillcrest Ave and on Sorority Row. I personally have never seen somebody get a ticket at these locations for staying past the time limit, but anything is possible with Park ‘N Pony.
The most frustrating thing about being a commuter student at SMU is the limited parking, and it only makes things worse knowing that the top three levels of the new Mustang Parking Center are nearly completely empty, but we can’t park there because it’s for residents only.
SMU is thinking about decreasing parking even more, but for all that is good in the world, please make levels four through six in that garage available to commuter students.