FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) — The Fayetteville school district is close to solving parking issues it's had at the high school by adding parking spaces and is looking to add even more.
The district reconfigured its front parking lot over the summer to allow for better traffic flow. Now, bus drivers pick-up and drop-off students in front of the school and parents pick-up and drop-off in the back of the school.
Associate Superintendent Megan Slocum says by re-configuring the parking lot, all teachers can park in front of the school and more students can park in the student lot.
“We were able to add over 200 spaces to the front parking lot and the existing student parking lot through reconfiguration, which was really helpful, and now we have about 25 juniors who are on the waiting list,” Slocum said.
Right now, the school district is working with the University of Arkansas to potentially turn the area behind the district’s administration office and next to the greenhouse, into a third parking lot with room for 63 more parking spaces.
Lack of parking spaces on school property was forcing students to rent parking spaces from residences along Buchannan drive next to the school.
City of Fayetteville Senior Planner Jonathan Curth says neighbors have complained that putting parking lots in yards is a violation of city code. He says there are now two property owners who have conditional use permits to continue renting out the spaces.
“Another property owner has come forth and worked with staff to remove some of the gravel on his property and plant a tree and a few other accommodations, kind of a middle ground so he could allow about 10 or so students on his property still parking there,” Curth said.
Slocum says if they can build the third parking lot those spaces would be ready for the next school year, making enough spots for all the juniors and seniors to park.
“We appreciate everyone’s patience as we’re working through the process, it is important that we have safety and we’ve tried to accomplish both of those things by re-configuring traffic flow which is a good thing for drivers on the road and for kids to be able to park,” Slocum said.
The school says right now it is working to make sure all juniors and seniors have spots to park before opening up parking to sophomores.