This, obviously, is the faculty/staff lot at Virginia Tech. This photo was taken last Thursday. The lot, as you can see, is barren.
So let me get this straight, my alma mater, Marshall University, has had a parking lot for years and a school with top-ranked architecture and engineering programs has how many? Zero. Sheesh.
You might be asking yourself, so what? What's the big deal about an empty faculty lot and no parking garage on campus? Surely there are plenty of surface lots, right? Well, not exactly. While there are a lot of surface lots at VT, few of them are divided up the way they should be in regard to the F/S and commuter ratio, and there pretty much are no lots close to any useful academic buildings or residence halls. In fact, residents are forced to park in "the cage," blocks away from their dorms. I personally find myself forced to park in a commuter lot that is out of sight of the building where my office is. There's a lot near my office, it's just, you know, faculty/staff only — and never full. Even though I have a graduate teaching assistant pass, the university (in all its wisdom, of course) made the TA spots the absolute farthest lot away from the buildings in which TAs need to teach. That's right, TA passes aren't allowed in F/S spots, even when 10+ of those faculty spots are open in any given lot on any given day.
Now, I have nothing against walking, but the parking situation at VT does make life a little less productive. I find myself leaving from close locations 30 minutes or more in advance because I never know how long it'll take to park and how far I will need to walk. After a couple of semesters, you begin to realize how much this park-time (as I like to call it) adds up. And the most frustrating part of all of it is driving by empty faculty spots only to go two blocks down to where you are actually allowed to park as a student commuter. It's also frustrating knowing there is a parking lot just outside your office that you aren't allowed to use until after 5 p.m., when I've probably already been on campus anyway — the after 5 p.m. rule comes in handy perhaps once per week.
So you can see the F/S lot above. The second photo was taken on the same day of the commuter
lot just beside it. Yeah. I think if there was ever a time that qualified me to say 'nuff said, now is that time. 'Nuff said.
This video accurately sums up my solution to the problem. Thanks to SNL and Kenan Thompson: