The University Wyoming’s Wyoming Hall will be the first tear-down project as plans for new campus housing move forward, meaning that new parking alternatives will need to be found for its many employees.
Chris Boswell, UW’s interim vice president of community affairs, said that many individuals will have to adapt to new and perhaps less convenient parking circumstances in the near future – and that includes himself — once construction begins on the Ivinson parking garage south of Old Main next year.
“That means I’ve lost my parking space too,” Boswell said. “A whole lot of people will have to get used to doing something that not enough of us do now, which is to take the bus. That’s just a reality.”
According to a timeline presented at the UW Board of Trustees meeting on Oct. 16, a shuttle bus will begin running from the gravel lots across from War Memorial Stadium on 22nd Street in January.
As Wyo Hall is phased out and demolished, many employees will go to work in Hill Hall in December. Like Ross and Knight Halls, Hill is a vacated residence hall to be repurposed as a work environment. Paul Kunkel, director of transportation services, said plans are in motion to re-allocate permit parking in the lot east of Crane and Hill halls on Grand Avenue.
“We have to be cognizant that we’re putting staff parking around where students are living,” Kunkel said. “It’s a learning process right now of exactly how many people, and who is moving over there and who will require parking.”
Spots will be converted from “R” (Resident) to “A” (Faculty/Staff) parking – Kunkel said a plan with final numbers should be settled upon in November, and that a decrease in the residence hall population should make the process a little easier.
“We’re planning on a typical exodus for those students that don’t come back in the spring to open up some spaces,” Kunkel said. “That will open up some spots in the residence hall spaces, and we’re not likely going to be selling any spring resident permits over there either.”
According to the timeline presented to trustees last week, other planned permit-parking conversions in January will target the South Express Lot, from which many students take buses to the Union.
The timeline calls for these currently unregulated spaces, which Kunkel said are often at maximum capacity around mid-day, to converted to “R” parking. “R” permits currently cost $163 annually.
However, UW spokesman Chad Baldwin it’s possible that some proposals in that timeline may not pan out — at least not in the time-frame described in that report.
“These are just some of the things that the university is considering doing with parking,” he said.