Have no fear, parking is here

Officials have begun construction of a new parking lot on Irvine Street in an effort to relieve parking problems at UNA.

The construction began Oct. 15 — almost a year after the move of the Student Media Office from that location — and should be completed at the end of this month, said Michael Gautney, director of facilities administration and planning.

“They’ve contracted six weeks to complete the project, which will put the completion date on Nov. 26,” Gautney said.

The lot — contracted by North Alabama Paving — will be entirely for student parking, Gautney said.

“The lot should give 56 spots,” he said. “The spots will all be white striped spaces for students.”

Since the loss of 90 parking spaces to the construction of the Academic Commons Building, officials said they have been working to recoup the spots.

“We took the parking area away for the construction of the Academic Commons Building, which meant losing 90 spaces,” he said. “We’re adding 56 back with this new lot, we added 16 at the Appleby lot and 28 at the location of the old maintenance facility.

“So, once we get the lot on Irvine built, we’ll have more (parking spots) than we had before the construction of the Academic Commons Building was started.”

Gautney said that, for now, there are no current or planned projects to increase parking on campus at this time.