Trail of Torment: Administration should consider making changes to the parking process

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Just about every student has experienced the horrors of this school’s very own Trail of Tears. I received my license in December of my sophomore year, so I immediately experienced the worst version of walking the trail: during the cold of the winter. Since I have two more years of the dreaded trail, I want changes. I understand parking is limited and we will inevitably still have to walk the trail, but there are possible solutions to the traffic issues with the current parking situation.

The traffic issues involved with the trail are major problems. First, there is the issue with congestion at peak times. My mom lives in Fishers, so I drive quite a bit to get to school when I stay at her house. If I am running even a little late, I know there will be more traffic and no parking anywhere near the start of the trail. In fact, if I do not arrive at the parking lot before 7:30 a.m., the parking lot closest to the trail is usually full or almost full. In the afternoon, the situation is not much better. Unless students sprint down the trail as the bell rings, they will inevitably go home late because of the relentless traffic. The traffic causes students to turn into aggressive drivers because the only way to get out quickly is to use force.

The traffic is also an issue from an accident viewpoint. Anecdotally, in the limited amount of time I have driven to school, I have witnessed two different car accidents between students heading west on Smokey Row Road. I am sure there have been more than I have not seen. These accidents are clearly dangerous for the students here and the other drivers on the road during the peak hours in the morning and afternoon.

These problems are not without a possible solution. This may be an unpopular opinion, but parking could just be reserved for juniors and seniors, which is the case at a number of other high schools in the area. Many sophomores do not receive their license until around their junior year anyway. Reserving the lot for upperclassmen could free up at least a little more space.

Additionally, adding more personnel to the area in the afternoon could be a solution. Currently, there are a couple people directing traffic near the crosswalk from the parking lot to the trail, while there are more than two places students leave the parking lot. Administrators should consider if the safety issue the trail causes is worth the resources needed to have another person directing traffic, which would clear up some of the congestion closer to the home side of the stadium.

While walking the trail twice a day will continue to be dreaded by students, all I ask is that administrators look at the issues the trail causes and considers some possible solutions to make parking an easier and safer process for everyone.

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