Students report parking problems at AC

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - By Holley Nees - email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Thousands of students plan to park it at Angelina College this semester, but not all of them will have a spot for their car.

"I got here an hour and a half early to find a spot and they were still crowded," student Brandi Barringer said.

"This morning I hunted for a spot for about 20 minutes," another student, Coby Bounds, said.

College administrators say record enrollment numbers are partially to blame for makeshift parking spots like these. Nearly 500 more students are at the college than last year.

"Our new health careers building which will be opening next fall, we could certainly use now, that will open up about eight new classrooms, for other core courses and we need those now," President Dr. Larry Phillips said. "We certainly could use the new 210 car parking lot."

Although the lots continue to fill up, Phillips says more parking is in the works. It just may take a little time.

He says they've already added 177 more spaces, but some students say they paid for the parking sticker, and they want a spot.

"I won't be here next year," Barringer said. "It's not helping me right now, in the heat, and the rain, or the snow or whatever it is that we're going to have this year, it's not helping me right now."

"It's better than like people have to do at a regular university, park a long ways off and then they have to walk a long ways," student Michael Fowler said. "It's pretty much just like high school again."

Phillips says it won't always be this way. It's just the first week of class and while enrollment is up, many students will be off-campus.

"Parking, and the traffic, all of that will smooth out in the next week or two," Phillips said. "Our health careers program will start going off-campus for their clinicals, people find their way, people carpool, people learn where to park."

For now the best solution is for students to add "parking time" to their schedule.

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