Limited CHS parking spaces causes frustrations

Limited CHS parking spaces causes frustrations

COLUMBUS, GA, (WTVM) - Parking problems plaguing residents near Columbus High School are now top of mind for the Muscogee County School District and city officials.

The issues of congestion and student cars blocking people's driveways dates back decades.  The concerns resurfaced in July 2015 when a representative from a neighborhood watch program appeared before council asking for relief.  Discussions continued again during Tuesday's city council meeting.

City Manager Isaiah Hugley suggested three options the school district should consider as possible remedies: build a parking deck, parking shuttle or bus students to the magnet school. 

Mayor Pro Tem Evelyn Turner Pugh commented saying she doesn't see the school district paying for a parking deck in that area.

“Parking issues at Columbus High have been going on since the 27 years I’ve been on council and probably before that, and it’s not just at Columbus High. I get calls all the time from people complaining about parking at other schools,” Pugh said.

While residents living along Wildwood and Forrest Avenue are frustrated by the ongoing dilemma, students are as equally irritated. Some students said they arrive to school an hour before the bell rings just to get a good parking spot in the student designated area on campus. 

That section is for upperclassman only, and another student parks his vehicle blocks away from the school and walks a good distance to get to the school.

“I park like three streets over on Wildwood,” stated Paxton Barkdull, a CHS senior. 

The pastor of St. Paul Church allows students who are church members to park in their lot using a parking permit. 

As for a possible solution to the problem, that remains to be seen. City and school officials plan to meet to hash out a plan to ease the tensions. 

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