Review of campus parking leads to action plans

One of the duties assigned by President Robert A. Oden Jr. to Douglas L. Givens when he became managing director of the Philander Chase Corporation, Kenyon's land acquisition and usage arm, was a thorough review of campus parking, the bane of many a college administration. Recently, Givens presented senior administrators with a set of parking recommendations for the College and an action plan for their implementation.

"My work was based on a comprehensive circulation and parking study and report prepared by NBBJ," says Givens, referring to the Columbus, Ohio, architectural and planning firm engaged to revise the Kenyon master plan in 1998. "Many of the responses to that report, from public meetings and memos, helped to shape my suggestions for parking at the College."

In his report, Givens addresses each of the recommendations made by NBBJ and offers several more of his own devising. While he endorses many of the NBBJ suggestions, he finds others either unwise or unworkable.

"Doug Givens's report will provide the basis for many discussions, and then decisions, for Kenyon in the years ahead," says Associate Provost Gregory P. Spaid '68, the senior-staff member who will work with Givens in implementing the plans. "For now, senior staff has approved several recommendations in the report to be accomplished over the next two years."

Those recommendations will involve the following actions on the part of the College:

*Engaging a parking-lot designer to work on these and future projects.

*Redesigning and enlarging the lot between Palme House and Davis House (to which the College fleet of vans and other vehicles will then be moved).

*Redesigning and enlarging the lot behind Horwitz, Timberlake, and Edelstein houses.

*Making the drive at the Church of the Holy Spirit a one-way street and allowing parking on one side only.

*Removing all parking spaces immediately contiguous to Ransom Hall (to create more green space around the building).

*Removing as many parking spaces as possible from the front of Peirce Hall, beginning with those directly opposite the main entrance.

*Redesigning and enlarging the South Lot (student parking).

Givens's own recommendations, based on personal observations and research, address the parking-related aspects of topics ranging from bicycle usage, to class scheduling, to the structure of fees and penalties.

"I started working on this project with the idea that there was a lot of disagreement about what needs to be done about parking," says Givens. "Instead, I found a good deal of agreement. We need to control parking; to do that, we need to bring our cars here and leave them, rather than driving them around the village. We need to commit ourselves to being the `walking campus' we claim to be. We don't need to pave any more of Gambier, beyond the minimal amount proposed in the report."

Back to Top