Disability parking at Art Museum subject to change on football game days

Parking spots sometimes taken by broadcasters; Fine Arts, CUE garages have available ADA parking

Visitors+need+to+either+purchase+a+general+parking+permit+or+a+Cougar+Athletic+Fund+permit+to+park+in+the+ADA+spots+in+the+Fine+Arts+or+CUE+garages+on+game+days.

ABBY SONNICHSEN

Visitors need to either purchase a general parking permit or a Cougar Athletic Fund permit to park in the ADA spots in the Fine Arts or CUE garages on game days.

ALEX MCCOLLUM, Evergreen reporter

WSU Transportation Services offers alternative Americans with Disabilities Act parking spots on game days when broadcasters block off the lot outside the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art.

Large sports networks like ESPN and FOX use available ADA parking spots between the art museum and Wilson-Short Hall to set up their equipment close to the stadium, said Daniel Records, ADA coordinator and senior compliance coordinator.

This issue has been raised by WSU students previously, according to a Daily Evergreen article.

In the past, Records said he assembled a team to troubleshoot this issue and come up with solutions so ADA parking close to the stadium is not taken up. The team included officials from the museum, WSU Athletics, Transportation Services and Facilities Services. They were not able to come up with an alternative location for the broadcasters.

This is the best place with the most reasonable distance to the stadium for broadcasters because of the size of area and infrastructure necessary for them to set up and do their work, said Cody Wilson, Transportation services customer service and marketing and outreach manager.

The museum parking lot does not fill up every football Saturday, Records said. It is usually only when WSU plays bigger games that are broadcasted nationally that the equipment must be set up there.

On days like that, the Fine Arts and Smith Center for Undergraduate Education parking garages are the next best places for ADA parking that will get game attendees closest to the stadium, he said.

Visitors need to either purchase a general parking permit or a Cougar Athletic Fund permit to park in the ADA spots in the Fine Arts or CUE garages on game days, Wilson said.

General parking permits can be purchased online in advance for $15 or on game day for $20, he said.

The Fine Arts and CUE garages have ADA-accessible elevators that take pedestrians up to the same level as the stadium entrance, Wilson said. These elevators let out close to the art museum’s ADA parking.

On days without the national broadcasters and when the museum lot is available, Wilson said they let drivers through the closed-off road to park if they have either the general or CAF permits and their ADA placard. The only issue then is the drivers have a hard time getting out when everyone is leaving the stadium at the same time, he said.

Transportation Services allows drivers who have a passenger with a disability to drive up to the stadium and drop off their passenger, then go and find parking, he said.

“So, we do everything we can to try and get the folks access, you know, as close as possible,” Wilson said.

There are currently no plans to develop a separate specific area for broadcasters to set up their equipment and plug in, he said. It costs a lot of money to get the necessary infrastructure and power supply set up.

There have also been issues in the past where visitors come to campus on game days to conduct other business. These visitors can reach out to Transportation Services for help, Wilson said.

“Email us, give us a call, let us know your need, where you need to be, and we will do our absolute best to accommodate you to figure something out to get you on to campus where you need to be,” he said.