Rockville Campus Parking Reconstruction Causes Traffic


Emmanuel Jean Marie

MC Rockville parking lot closed with traffic, August 2014 Photo: Emmanuel Jean Marie

As the first week of the fall semester ends, the closure of parking lots six and seven at the Rockville campus continue to cause traffic congestion.

“Right now, those two parking lots that are out of commission are being resurfaced,” said Safety and Security manager of the Rockville campus Tara Nelson. “This was expected to be done before the beginning of school.”


The reconstruction has left students scrambling for parking spaces, sometimes hours before they are expected to be in class.


“Somedays my classes start as early as 8:30am. I get here half an hour before my class starts, which makes it easy to find a parking space because it’s still pretty early,” says student Gabby Yaptinchay.


While some students cannot arrive early to ease the hunt for open spaces, other complications include the time spent locating a space and getting to class on time. Some students choose not to use the alternative parking arrangements due to distances they will have to travel between their car and classroom.


“I try to come at least forty minutes before class, yet sometimes I don’t find a space,” says Kany Sidibe. “Its frustrating when you’re still late to class. I find that now, when I am ready to leave the campus, there are people waiting for others to leave so that they can have their spots.”


In an email sent via MyMC, Dr. Tonya R. Mason, Interim Dean for Student Services, informed students of alternative parking arrangements. The email stated that once all parking spaces are full, including parking lot thirteen, across Mannakee Street opposite the campus, students will be directed to the Rockville Swim Center off Martins Lane. There, students can receive free shuttle transportation to the Rockville Campus.


In addition to helping students to navigate these alternative parking options, campus security staff will continue to help direct students to open spaces.


“With rain and delays, construction workers are doing the best they can. Continued construction into the beginning of the school year was not an anticipated issue. We were expecting for it to be completed,” says Nelson.


Despite these student complications, Rockville Security has the situation under control.“We’ve been able to accommodate the usage with lot thirteen and guided people to that area. We have a contingency plan to use the Rockville Swim Center as a secondary overflow, but we haven’t had the need,” Nelson concluded.
As the first week of the new semester comes to a close, the traffic congestion is expected to decrease. Parking lots six and seven are also expected to have completed renovations soon.