LACES Untied

LACES Untied

LACES Untied

Morning Madness

The LACES parking predicament
Art by Lucas Lee.

Battling the traffic around the LACES neighborhood is a challenge that student drivers face every morning. Being responsible for getting themselves to school is a privilege—and sometimes an obstacle.

“There’s a lot of chaos in the mornings before school. Many parents, many students, all trying to get their kids and themselves onto campus on time before 8:24 am. The streets are often packed, it’s hard to find a spot,” said 12th grader Sophie Gopen.

But the morning commotion affects more than just students and parents. This chaos does not go unnoticed by the residents of the LACES neighborhood, who are often bothered by the street traffic and the parking habits of some. 

Some residences might need to move their cars from their driveway to the street because their gardeners need access to their driveways and backyards. Other neighbors just might want to park in front of their house after running some early morning errands. This becomes a problem when the students knowingly or unknowingly take up two street parking spaces,” explained Michelle Warrick, a member of the P.I.C.O. neighborhood council.

Student drivers don’t want to shoulder all of the blame, finding fault with some of the neighbors’ practices.

“[The neighbors] double-park, they get mad when we move trash cans. And it’s like, ‘you live near a high school. You should know that there’s gonna be student drivers.’ But it happens every year,” said 12th grader Kai Lavin.

The issue has gone beyond passive-aggressive parking, however. LACES consistently receives calls of protest from neighborhood groups who take issue with the way students impact their streets. 

“One group services elderly people in the neighborhood… they roll their trash cans out, they put them in a place where it’s easy to put them back in, but then some of our students move those cans around. There’s another group whose gardeners can’t park near where they’re doing their work,” said assistant principal Mr. Jacob. 

As such, neighbors have petitioned to limit student parking, successfully restricting segments of the street from school use.

“Some woman came by with a petition saying that she wanted to put up limited parking because students were taking up too much space on the street and I said, ‘Well, where else are they going to park? They don’t have a student parking lot over there.’ But I think I was the only one on my block that did not sign the petition,” said Karyn D., a longtime Hi Point resident. Now, much of Hi Point allows only two-hour parking from 8 AM to 3 PM, rendering that part effectively useless for students looking for somewhere to leave their cars during the school day.

Conflict hasn’t been limited to petitions and rezonings, and has even escalated to verbal confrontations between students and neighbors.

“There’s this one lady who always has cones in front of her house. One day she came running out of her house and stopped me from driving away. She accused me of running over her cones,” said 12th grader Marcus Pagel.

Despite the tension, student drivers still find enjoyment in the parking situation. They’ve formed a sort of street rivalry, jokingly debating the best nearby street to park on.

“I know there’s a big competition between the people that park on Stearns and the people that park on Hayworth but Hayworth is the obvious better street as there is no conflict, everyone’s happier. It does take a little while longer to walk to LACES but we all need that cardio,” said Pagel.

Other students lack this street-name loyalty, instead opting to scrounge up parking wherever they can find it.

“I do a little mix of Stearns and then the street next to it. It really just depends if I can find a spot…  I’ll get to the stop sign and just do a little scan. I’m like ‘Oh, there’s a spot. Woot!’ If not, I move on to the next row, and the next row. It takes effort,” said Gopen.

But no matter their street of choice, students appreciate being able to park near school.

“I come here every morning and I see my friends, and I’m like, wow, what a lovely morning…I just be playing with those kids over there, and the little cat on the skateboard sometimes. But that’s it. Besides that, it’s been good, it’s been good on Stearns,” said 12th grader Nate Fleming. 

With students’ need to park not ending anytime soon, cooperation from both sides will be necessary to mitigate the morning chaos. Jacob advises students and parents to simply “be courteous.” After all, parking is a two-way street.

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About the Contributors
Leilani Krantz
Leilani Krantz, Feature Editor, Copy Editor
Leilani Krantz is a LACES senior. This is her third year on LACES Untied staff. In her free time, you’ll find Leilani training with SRLA or enjoying frozen yogurt.
Kylie Monterosso
Kylie Monterosso, Editor-in-Chief
Kylie Monterosso is the co-editor-in-chief of the newspaper. In her free time, she enjoys playing tennis, watching tv, and learning about trees. She is grateful for the experience of being able to work at Untied for a fourth year.
Mia Orr
Mia Orr, Editor-in-Chief
Mia is the editor-in-chief of The Horn. She enjoys long walks, good music, and learning about birds.
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