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2007 Football Parking: Starting to Take Shape

June 20, 2007

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If you had a chance to attend one of the 25 Clemson Club meetings this spring, then you heard briefly about some of the new challenges facing football parking for the upcoming season. The loss of space continues to be an issue as some of our lots have been reduced in size and scope and others will be affected in the coming years. The result is that we have to utilize other parking spaces never before assigned to IPTAY donors. This impacts the non-placard/general public parking options that many people have used in the past.

Additionally, we continue to apply the IPTAY parking policy that annually assigns parking based on your level of contribution and points within that level. Over the past three years we have attempted to do a better job of communicating to you the contribution requirements for specific lots. This article explains the assignment process, policies and regulations, parking placard changes and non-placard/general public parking options. The second page describes the specific gains and losses in our parking facility for 2007. I hope this information provides you an opportunity to prepare you as we both make plans for the 2007 season.

Parking Loss/Gain

Lot 4 Area Parking IPTAY is once again losing parking spaces that have been assigned to donors. Many of these areas have been communicated at our Spring Meetings and now that we have a specific plan to address these losses we can cover them in greater detail. One of the most significant impacts will be in the back of lot 4 between the track complex and the dike. The new golf practice facility is currently under construction and will impact football parking by approximately 800 parking spaces. The majority of lot 4 will be confined to the front part of Jervey Meadows where the reserved numbered motorhome spaces are assigned. Additional lot 4 parking for cars will be on the back side of the outdoor track. To compensate for this loss, lot 13 (rugby field near Hwy 93) will be completely assigned to IPTAY donors in 2007. This lot can accommodate nearly 1250 cars for IPTAY donors at the $350 level and above. Lot 13 will be ALL IPTAY

Lot 13 Lot 13 will be completely assigned to IPTAY donors in 2007. This lot can hold 1250 vehicles and will help to recover our losses in lot 4. The effect will be felt by those non-placard vehicles that will now have to turn into the YMCA, as there are no general public parking options beyond the bridge as you come into the athletic district of Clemson’s Campus.

Lot 3A, 3J, Jervey paved lot, and the Reserved Motorhome lot The configuration of these lots will remain relatively the same. Lot 3J on the lawn of Jervey will be reduced by 15 spaces to avoid the overcrowding that occurred in 2006.

Lot 9 In 2006 lot 9 was divided into 4 areas to avoid overcrowding and lack of control. Formerly lot 9’s 1600 spaces was too large to control and was often overcrowded and parked inefficiently. There will also be some loss in area lot 9 for this season. The small paved parking lot behind Earle Hall and some of the grass of lot 9 will be closed off with a construction fence as they install a new chiller behind this facility. To correct this problem lot 9 will be assigned to 600 donors instead of the approximately 850 last season. Additionally, donors will be directed into lot 22 off of Perimeter Rd while lot 21 and 20 will enter off of Williamson Rd. If your placard designates lot 22, 21 or 20 then you must park in your lot and not in what is now designated as lot 9.

Lot 8, 10, 20, 21, 22, Hunter Hall, Earle Hall, South Palmetto Blvd These parking lots/streets will not change regarding the number of available spaces for 2007. We do ask that you respect these academic buildings and the surrounding landscape that we park next to on game day.

Lot 7 and the Woodland Cemetery As many of you have noticed there is a new entrance into the Woodland Cemetery that will no doubt enhance the look of this area. However, there will be fewer parking spaces due to this structure and landscaping. The first loss will be the numbered spaces on either side of the road as you enter the cemetery. Some of these spaces will possibly be used but the majority will be moved to the area just to the left of the old cemetery entrance as numbered spaces. There are additional areas in lot 7 where landscaping will cost football parking an estimated 75 spaces at the top of the hill. There may be an opportunity to make better use of this space further down the hill towards Shotgun Alley so that few donors will be affected and reassigned to lot 9 or other area lots. In the future there will be further expansion and improvements being made to the Woodland Cemetery and we will have to make the necessary adjustments to our parking as those occur.

Lot 1, lot 2A and Lot 3E If you have been to Clemson recently you have no doubt seen the landscaping project along Hwy 93 that will limit the number of cars that we are able to park in lot 1, 2A and 3E during the football season. The landscaping project will result in a loss of 80 parking spaces in lot 1, 60 numbered spaces in lot 2A and most likely all of the bottom area parking of lot 3E across from the Esso Club. Lot 1 holds about 420 cars when everyone parks efficiently and makes the use of all the lot for parking cars instead of tailgating. This project will reduce lot 1 from 420 to nearly 340 spaces. Lot 2A will lose nearly all of the numbered spaces against the sidewalk of Hwy 93. This lot was assigned to 180 donors last season. This loss will affect lot 3E as we move the numbered spaces that were lost in 2A to the upper part of 3E next to Ravenel Rd. With the upper part of 3E being used for numbered parking and the bottom part of 3E changing with the landscaping project, lot 3E has been reduced from 115 cars to now a reserved numbered parking lot accommodating 50 vehicles. When the project is completed we will have a better idea on how the area can be used for parking.

The end result is that we now have less supply on the north side of the stadium where we already needed more spaces. With the increased demand the result will be fewer donors at lower levels and lower priority point totals receiving their first choice for parking in any of these three lots. In the future IPTAY will be further impacted by the loss of lot 12 (old Johnstone) and the West-library lot for the expansion plans under consideration.

Lot 2, Heisman lot, Fike lot, Heisman Street, lot 12 and Klugh Ave The available lot and street parking in these locations has not been reduced. We do ask that everyone be especially considerate to others as they enter into their parking space. Lot 2 is particularly restrictive and we ask for your cooperation when others enter their assigned space. Please move all chairs, tents and tailgaters so that there are no accidents. Also remember to center your vehicle on the hanging number sign. This is very important for the end of the rows so that everyone can fit into their space.

Gentry Hall and Sikes Hall With the help of university administrators, IPTAY has been given the opportunity to grow into areas that have not been assigned to donors. This includes Gentry Hall (next to the Mellow Mushroom) that will be 25 numbered spaces assigned to donors at the $1400 level and above. IPTAY will also grow into the are of Sikes Hall and Park View Dr. parking areas that have not been be assigned to donors in the past. This area will park 250 cars and will help us to handle some of our other losses and the growth of IPTAY. IPTAY has also been allowed to use the 18-20 spaces behind the Dillard Building (near the IPTAY wheelchair lot). IPTAY will also make better use of Calhoun Drive and its 130 numbered parking spaces from Tillman to Sirrine.

Lot 5, lot 6, Cent Blvd Ext, Press Box Road, Centennial Blvd, lot 3, Ravanel Rd There has not been any loss of parking space in these parking areas. Similar to lot 2; we ask that everyone be considerate of others in lot 5, 6 and 3 to avoid any accidents between cars driving to their assigned space and tailgating activates.

Parking Assignment

The parking assignment process begins as soon as the priority ticket deadline has passed. Once all ticket orders are taken the parking process can begin. Donors are ranked in priority point order and assigned individually based on their rank. Heisman donors are given the privilege of parking side-by-side. A good example would be a Fike donor getting 1 spot in lot 3 around Littlejohn and then another spot in lot J (Jervey paved lot). This process is repeated throughout all donor levels. As has been the case the past 3 years, there will be reassignments. IPTAY has seen increases in its donor levels across the board.

Donor Level Upgrade New Total
$2100 585 33 628
$2800 296 121 1369
$5600 91 12 109
$7000 28 16 243
$10,000 44 16 193

Policies and Regulations

Much has been said about earlier announcements of not allowing cookers and trailers into IPTAY parking lots. This information was actually picked up by the Associated Press and publicized that Clemson would not allow tailgating at its football games for the 2007. Nothing could be further from the truth. The atmosphere that you have created at Clemson is rivaled by everyone in our conference and throughout the country and we certainly don’t want to do anything that will adversely affect that environment. However, please understand why restrictions of some kind have to be placed on tailgating activities so that we can accomplish our main goal which is to get every car quickly and safely off the road to attend the football game. Trailers and cookers will be allowed for 2007. However, these items must not limit our ability to park cars. If you have 1 placard then that gives you a space 9 feet wide and 20 feet long. The picture from one of our donors is a good example of a trailer and car that doesn’t prohibit our ability to park cars. Tents, chairs, cookers and trailers that extend beyond this area are out of policy and hinder our ability to efficiently park cars. If you have 2 placards and you want to use one for a large cooker or trailer then that is your decision.

Parking Placards

This year the parking placards will be different than previous years. This year you will receive a parking placard for each game. This will allow you to share your parking with someone if you cannot attend and you won’t have to worry about getting it back in time for the next game. Each individual game placard will have a perforated edge that will be torn by an attendant as you enter each lot to prevent “placard passing” that overcrowds our lots and allows non-donors a benefit that is reserved for donors to IPTAY. The placards will also have larger print to avoid the confusion that occurred last year for those donors assigned numbered parking. The back of the placard has also changed to better serve you. Our parking map has been divided into 4 quadrants. Your specific map to your parking location is on the back of your placard. Please follow this map so that we can better control traffic flow. For example; if you park in Sikes, lot 12, Calhoun Dr, Fort Hill St, Sirrine, Lee Hall, West-library lot, South Palmetto Blvd or Hunter Hall #1 and #2 you can enter at Sikes Hall off of Hwy 93. This will remove some of the burden that is placed on Perimeter and Williamson Rd to avoid traffic delays. The placards will be mailed out with your season tickets.

Non-Placard/General Public Parking

The final issue that needs to be addressed is parking for those that attend the games that aren’t IPTAY donors and don’t have a placard. The need for additional quick parking options to move traffic off of the main roads has also been addressed in hopes of reducing congestion. Each Saturday Clemson invites nearly 90,000 people onto its campus and we have to find more parking options to get everyone off the road.

Hwy 123 from Seneca, SC The first option is the YMCA. This has been a $10 pay lot. However, the YMCA will be a free lot for 2007. There will be shuttle service for an additional charge of $5 per person. This parking lot is the last option for non-placard parking as you come from Oconee County.

Hwy 76 from I-85 and Anderson, SC The other options would be if you are coming from the Anderson side of Clemson. These include the Brooks Center, P&A Building, part of R-1 student parking lot, areas near the golf course and Kite Hill. Parking on the side of the road is prohibited as it creates a safety hazard. There will also be increased parking across from the President’s House in Douthit Hills (married housing duplexes). The demolition of these structures will open up other parking options for 2007. We cannot stress enough that parking is limited in these areas and car pooling is strongly encouraged. Follow all Highway Patrol directions to the next available parking area.

As we move forward through this season and into the future, IPTAY and its donors will continue to be flexible as the campus grows and parking spaces are gained, reconfigured or lost. I would be remiss if I didn’t take an opportunity to thank Neill Cameron, Mary Poore and Geary Robinson with the University Administration for all of their help as we work together to handle the nearly 90,000 visitors each football game. They understand our challenges and the changes that our donors are faced with and have been a tremendous asset to the athletic department during this process. A recent conversation with a donor said it best when he explained how Clemson people can change and adjust as needed as long as they are told in advance about the changes. We will continue to improve our communication with these issues and keep everyone informed. Furthermore, I cannot stress enough that reassigning parking is not an easy task. It would be much easier to keep assignments the same every year instead of looking at each of the 13,000 ticket accounts individually to determine their parking priority annually. However, this would eliminate equity in our parking facility and would not be in the best interest of IPTAY and its goal of raising the necessary funds for our student-athletes. Together we can do our part to provide the educational opportunities to the young men and women that proudly represent Clemson University.

Go Tigers! Jason Wilson