The Future of the Bonds Wilson Campus Parking Lot

Academic Magnet is paving the way for success, but literally this time.

It is no secret that the Bonds Wilson campus parking lot has been a public enemy of students from both the School of the Arts and Academic Magnet for months, nay years, now. B days especially result in a discernible overall increase in anxiety and stress for the students since the Academic Magnet seniors are required to stay in school until the highly anticipated 3:30 P.M. release bell. However, the parking lot of horror may be making a (right-hand) turn for the better.

Marked gravel lot (Via Google Maps)

As of recent, our administration has announced a new addition to the campus: an extra paved parking lot. Mr. Perlmutter said himself that the Magnet parking lot has been in need of an improvement for the last ten years, and the time has finally come. What is currently referred to as “the gravel lot,” “the student-athete lot,” “the junior lot,” “the side lot,” and plenty of other nicknames, will officially become a smooth, asphalt-blanketed parking lot. Unfortunately, however, it will not be ready for use until the 2022-2023 school year, making this year’s juniors and sophomores the most immediately impacted group of the latest development. That being said, construction and physical planning of the new lot will begin as soon as this weekend, for in order for everything to be in tip-top shape for next school year’s group of student drivers, action needs to be taken as soon as possible. So, where does this leave us now?

Starting upon our arrival back from Spring Break, April 18, the gravel parking lot will no longer be available for use. And for those who are still unsure, that means it is closed, off-limits, inaccessible, banned, prohibited, illicit. Students and administration will not be allowed to park, drive, or walk through the gravel lot for the rest of the school year due to construction, meaning that many drivers are in need of a parking spot for the remainder of the year. But fear not, for Magnet’s own have devised a temporary lot for all those who are being evicted.

Located in the field adjacent to the gravel lot, nearly 75 (decently large-sized) parking spots divided among three sections will be available for those whose car’s lost their home at the expense of the new lot. Anyone that was assigned a parking spot in the gravel lot at the beginning of the school year, by now administration has hopefully already issued out your new parking assignment.

Temporary parking lots (Via Google Maps)

Due to the location of the temporary lot, those who park there will not need to drive through the Bonds Wilson Campus in order to get in and out of school. In fact, students who park there are given special access to the bus entrance/exit, resulting in a fairly ubndisturbed, traffic-free dismissal for them.

Model of new paved parking lot

And despite current seniors not being able to fully enjoy the parking lot’s extension and its consequential traffic changes, there is a slight advantage to the construction of the new lot starting now. For example, since students will be required to share the bus loop exit with the buses in the afternoon, both juniors and seniors will be released from school five minutes earlier. And although a 3:25 P.M. dismissal may not seem very significant, even just a few minutes extra can make a huge difference when it comes to the parking lot. Especially for the students that will be parking in the forthcoming temporary lot, it is crucial to take advantage of this additional allotted time because once the buses start leaving campus, you will be forced to wait until all 20+ buses make their way through toward West Enterprise Street.

The making of this new paved lot has been in the works for quite a while now, and although the first few weeks after Spring Break may be a little rough with everyone adjusting to the altered traffic routes and dismissal bells, the lasting outcomes will hopefully prove to be worth it.