After a year of preparing, the student parking resources have moved from the Campus Services building to Student Business Office (SBO) in Old Main 110.
The move was done to make parking services more accessible for students and faculty alike. Keeping all the financial needs of student and faculty in one location was made to improve efficiency, said Assistant Director of Public Safety and Assistant Police Chief Donnell Tanksley.
“It just makes sense for customer service,” Officer Tanksley said.
Although the transition will ultimately make parking service needs easier to take care of for both staff and customers, Officer Tanksley said he does see one problem potentially arising.
“The main challenge – especially for those seasoned students – will be to getting used to the change [in location],” Officer Tanksley said.
Almost doubling the number of parking services staff from the Campus Service location, the number of staff at the SBO will lessen the burden on staff and customers alike, said Manager of the Student Business Office Bob Putich.
The number of employees SBO has increased from six to 11 since the move, Putich said.
The university would like to continue to improve the efficiency of the parking services experience, Tanksley said. With new solar-powered debit/credit-only pay machines being planted around campus, both the SBO and Campus Services hope to bring Western into the 21 century of parking technology, Officer Tanksley said.
“We are continuously monitoring how to get better, how to do better, and we’re listening to our students, faculty, and staff,” he said.
New services like License Plate Recognition and Pay By Cell, which will be implemented in the upcoming calendar year, will be detailed on the Parking Services website as they are released.
“[The technology] isn’t new; it’s just really accelerating,” Putich said.
The ultimate goal is to move services like purchasing parking permits entirely online, Officer Tanksley said.
“We’re transitioning over to the SBO, but don’t get used to it, because in a few months, you won’t have to go there at all [for parking services],” Putich said.
Although student and staff parking needs will now be handled at the SBO, the Campus Services building will remain as the resource for people on tours of Western, families visiting students and sculpture park visitors.
“We have not decreased services, what we have done is increased efficiency and the customer service experience for faculty, students, staff and visitors,” Officer Tanksley said.